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Imagine waking up in a California hospital and suddenly speaking with a foreign accent–an accent that doesn’t go away but merely becomes the new way you speak. Last month, the Huffington Post discussed the case of an Australian woman who woke up in the hospital after suffering a brain injury that left her speaking with a pronounced French accent.
The woman had little history with the French language, other than studying it a bit in high school.
Traumatic brain injuries can lead to a number of serious and lifelong conditions.
Doctors call this woman’s condition Foreign Accent Syndrome, a very rare condition that sometimes occurs as a result of severe brain damage. Foreign Accent Syndrome was reported initially during the 1940s, and there are only about 100 known cases.
A British woman developed the syndrome as recently as 2012 after suffering a seizure.
The Australian woman mentioned above is currently speaking out about her condition in order to help others recognize the challenges of living with brain injury-related conditions such as Foreign Accent Syndrome.
Stories such as this woman’s remind us of the complexity that surrounds brain injuries. Brain injuries can cause a number of conditions, from memory loss, to depression, to various disabilities. Not only are the actual brain injuries and the treatment of such injuries complex, but pursuing related legal claims is also very difficult. Those who have suffered brain injuries due to the negligent actions of another may benefit from obtaining legal counsel in order to seek compensation for related medical costs and other expenses.