TBI – Survivors, Caregivers, Family, and Friends

SPEAK OUT! – Matthew Davis


Donna O’Donnell Figurski

Matt Alta





1. What is your name? (last name optional)


2. Where do you live? (city and/or state and/or country)

Stamford, CT, USA

3. When did you have your TBI? At what age?

1996/97         age 25

4. How did your TBI occur?


5. When did you (or someone) first realize you had a problem?  

CT scan

6. What kind of emergency treatment, if any, did you have? (e.g., surgery, tracheotomy, G-peg)

cranial surgery to pull out compression fracture and hold in place with small plates

 7. Were you in a coma? If so, how long?


 8. Did you do rehab? What kind of rehab (i.e., In-patient or Out-patient and Occupational, Physical, Speech, Other)? How long were you in rehab?

out-patient,  2 months

 9. What problems or disabilities, if any, resulted from your TBI?  (e.g., balance, perception, personality, etc.)

mood issues – easily overwhelmed


attention span

 10. How has your life changed? Is it better? Is it worse?

just different

 11. What do you miss the most from your pre-TBI life?  

clarity of thought

 12. What do you enjoy most in your post-TBI life?

being alive

 13. What do you like least about your TBI?  

not knowing what effects are from the TBI or age, etc.

 14. Has anything helped you to accept your TBI?

the book Brainlash 

 15. Has your injury affected your home life and relationships and, if so, how?  

have to be careful not to snap at people

 16. Has your social life been altered or changed and, if so, how?

not as much patience

 17. Who is your main caregiver? Do you understand what it takes to be a caregiver?

wife (she is recent)

 18. What are your future plans? What do you expect/hope to be doing ten years from now?

being a dad

holding a job

 19. What advice would you offer to other TBI survivors?  

be patient; understand its normal to feel these things


Thank you, Matthew, for taking part in this interview. I hope that your experience will offer some hope, comfort, and inspiration to my readers.

(Disclaimer: The views or opinions in this post are solely that of the interviewee.)

If you would like to be a part of this project, please go to TBI Survivor Interview Questionnaire for a copy of the questions and the release form.

(Photo compliments of Matthew.)

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