Northwestern Student Falls Down Stairs at a Party

A Northwestern student was taken to Evanston Hospital after sustaining head and neck injuries from falling down stairs at a party.

The police were dispatched to the party for the noise, but received a call on their way to the party that someone at the party had fallen down the back stairs.

The injuries were not life threatening as of August 27 at about 9:00 a.m., according to the Daily Northwestern.

Falls were the leading cause of traumatic brain injury from 2006 to 2010, according to the CDC. Falls accounted for 40 percent of all TBIs in the United States that resulted in an emergency department visit, hospitalization, or death.

TBI occurs when there is a bump, blow, or jolt to the head that causes the brain to strike the skull, damaging the normal functioning of the brain.

TBIs range from mild (concussions) which result in a brief change in consciousness to severe which result in prolonged periods of unconsciousness or lost memory post-injury.

Unintentional blunt trauma was the second leading cause of traumatic brain injury. This kind of injury accounted for about 15 percent of all TBIs in the United States from 2006 to 2010.

In addition, TBI accounted for more than 280,000 hospitalizations and 2.2 million emergency department visits.

From 2001 to 2010, emergency department visits for TBI increased by 70 percent, but hospitalizations only increased by 11 percent. Deaths actually decreased by 7 percent in the same time frame.

This could possibly due to heightened awareness of traumatic brain injuries in the United States.

Falling down stairs makes it difficult to catch yourself; therefore, it can result in serious injury. We are hoping that the 18-year-old man that fell down the back stairwell of the residence is doing well and will recover with minimal damages.

Sometimes traumatic brain injury can cause difficulty concentrating and forgetfulness among other problems that can disrupt school performance. Northwestern University has the AccessibleNU program that can make accommodations for students with disabilities. This might include hiring a note-taker or getting extended time on tests. School should be contacted shortly after the injury to plan for the return to school.


Gordon Johnson

Attorney Gordon Johnson is one of the nations leading brain injury advocates. He is Past-Chair of the TBILG, a national group of more than 150 brain injury advocates. He has spoken at numerous brain injury seminars and is the author of some of the most read brain injury web pages on the internet.

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