Traumatic amnesia, or loss of memory from a blow to the head, is common amongst motorcycle accident victims who have suffered a traumatic brain injury. Experiencing a loss of memory can be frightening, both for the patient and his or her loved ones. In some cases, memories are eventually restored, while in others, the patients may never fully recover.

Two Types of Traumatic Amnesia

Amnesia may develop when there has been damage to the hippocampus and/or temporal lobes. There are two general types of traumatic amnesia.

  • Anterograde amnesia patients this type of amnesia cannot recall events that occurred after the accident. They can often recall memories from prior to the accident, but have difficulty remembering information from after the trauma occurred.
  • Retrograde amnesia patients with retrograde amnesia cannot recall the past. They have difficulty remembering events, people, and situations for a certain amount of time in the past. They may lose memory of the hours, days, weeks, or even years leading up to the accident but are able to create new memories.

Traumatic Amnesia Can Be Hard on the Patient as well as Loved Ones

In a blog post, Sylvia Behnish, author of Rollercoaster Ride With Brain Injury (For Loved Ones), describes the impact her husband’s brain injury from a motorcycle accident and amnesia had on her.

She explains how when her husband awoke, he believed it was ten years prior. This was especially traumatic for Behnish because she and her husband had only met three years prior to the accident, so her husband had little to no memory of their relationship.

Within eight weeks, Behnish’s husband began remembering some of the people from the recent past, but still had gaps in memory. “For those people suffering from these types of memory losses, it must be like living in a fog - they know it's there but it's just beyond their grasp,” Behnish writes. You can read more about her story on her blog,

A Motorcycle Accident Attorney Can Help

If your loved one has suffered a TBI and traumatic amnesia in a motorcycle accident – whether riding downtown, on a quiet local street, or on a major highway like I-20, seek legal counsel about filing a claim for compensation. For a free consult in Atlanta, contact the Law Offices of Jason Schultz: 404-474-0804.

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