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Traumatic Brain Injury Explained

What Can Happen in a Traumatic Brain Injury?

According to the National Institutes of Neurological Health and Strokes, when damage to the brain occurs, nerve cells and brain cells are damaged, bleeding in the brain can occur and the brain may become deprived of the oxygen it needs.

Two Kinds of Traumatic Brain Injury

There are generally two kinds of traumatic brain injuries: open or closed wounds.  In a closed wound, no damage to the brain is visible.  When there is a blow to the head, the skull rocks back and forth and the brain follows, causing nerve fibers to be stretched, twisted or torn. Sometimes, the ridges of the skull can collide, and more damage occurs, arteries and veins in the brain may very well be damaged which allows blood to leak in the brain. In an open wound, the brain is exposed and damaged.  In instances when the brain is crushed the base of the skull and the nerves in the brain stem are harmed.

Immediacy of Medical Can Decide Recovery

What happens at the exact moment of the traumatic incident and what happens immediately after (and how fast medical intervention occurs) is critical to a person’s chances of recovery.  The complications which follow the immediate blow (for example, bleeding in the brain, fluids leaking from the brain and lack of oxygen to the brain)  often cause “secondary cell death”  but the damage can be reduced if there is immediate medical help and proper  treatment. According to the National Institutes of Neurological Health and Strokes, damage to blood vessels can cause hematomas, or heavy bleeding around the brain.  This can cause great pain to the patient, as well as swelling of the brain tissues. This  pressure on the skull  can be deadly if the pressure is not relieved – unlike swelling of the ankle or knee, there’s no room for swelling inside the head. If medical personnel suspect that swelling could occur, they insert a catheter into the brain to measure how severe the wound is, and can undertake a procedure that drains fluid from the brain to relieve the pressure. Sometimes drugs also can be used to relieve the pressure. More damage can occur in a traumatic injury if veins or arteries are severed and oxygen – or not enough oxygen – can reach the brain. The National Institutes of Neurological Health and Strokes and other health organizations that study and treat traumatic brain injury, emergency personnel use the Glasgow or other measurement scales to see how severe the injury might be at the scene of an accident or attack.

Initial Tests Important

They also test the person’s temperature, pulse, breathing rate and responsiveness.  These initial tests are important in determining how severe a traumatic brain injury could be and in taking steps to prevent secondary damage. If the patient is not breaking properly or and there’s a worry  about lack of blood flow to the brain, administer CPR and sometimes open a person’s airways to make sure he or she is breathing, Because brain injuries often are accompanied by neck or spinal cord injuries, emergency medical personnel take great not to move the patient until they can be properly stabilized. According to the National Institute of Neurological Health, damage to blood vessels can cause hematomas, or heavy bleeding around the brain. If your loved one describes an injury that they’ve sustained overseas as an explosion, a fall or a vehicle accident that caused a head injury, a bump on the head, be sure that they’re getting qualified medical care. Don’t let them stay by themselves and be sure to contact a DBA attorney. The first round of medical care is the most important.