It isn’t uncommon for those who are victims of domestic violence to be choked or struck on the head. A study from Ohio State involving 49 survivors of partner abuse found that 81% of victims had a head injury while 83% had been strangled by their abuser. Symptoms of these injuries could manifest themselves in ways that victims don’t immediately recognize. In some cases, doctors, police officers and others don’t think to check victims for potential head injuries.

A person who has been struck in the head could experience changes in mood or memory loss. They could also experience fainting spells or otherwise lose consciousness with little or no warning. Other studies have noted that there is a link between brain injury and domestic violence, but the study from Ohio State provides greater detail about that link. Those who have seen the research believe that it can help advocates better meet the needs of victims they interact with.

For instance, a friend may assume that a survivor is refusing to seek treatment because he or she is being stubborn. However, it may actually be a result of a brain injury caused by a blow to the head or a lack of oxygen. In some cases, individuals may be experiencing symptoms of both types of injuries.

Individuals who have catastrophic injuries such as a traumatic brain injury caused by the negligence of another person or entity may be entitled to compensation. Compensation may be available to pay medical bills or recover lost wages related to an accident or attack. Punitive damages might also be available in a settlement or as part of a jury award after a trial. Medical records, police records and witness statements could be used as evidence in a personal injury case.