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Types of Brain Injuries

A brain injury is a very serious condition. There are many types of brain injuries with varying symptoms and consequences if not properly treated. From falls to car accidents or even health conditions, there are so many ways a brain injury can occur. In some cases, the injury may not cause any immediate symptoms. It is important to understand the various types and get the needed treatment for each.

Traumatic Brain Injuries

When a brain injury is caused by any external force, it is considered a traumatic brain injury. Any post accident brain injuries can be considered a traumatic brain injury. These are commonly caused by falls, car accidents, and other events and can be categorized into five different types. These injuries can be found on their own or in combination with other traumatic or even non-traumatic brain injuries.

Concussion

A concussion is considered a mild traumatic brain injury. It is caused by a bump, blow, or even a jolt to the head. Symptoms of a concussion can show up immediately after an injury or may not present themselves for hours or days after the injury. Loss of consciousness, memory issues, headache, nausea, vomiting, blurry vision, or mood changes could all be a sign of a concussion.

Although considered a mild traumatic brain injury, a concussion is very serious and should be checked out by a medical professional. Concussions can become serious quickly and could be more serious than it seems.

Swelling or Edema

When the brain is injured, it may swell. This is often referred to as edema. This is a very serious condition because there is no room inside the skull for the brain to expand. Swelling that is not addressed quickly could lead to further damage to the brain due to the pressure.

Diffuse Axonal Injury

Diffuse axonal injury or DAI occurs when the brain shifts or rotates inside the skull. This can cause tearing in the long nerve fibers of the brain (axons). Often, the damages are microscopic and cannot be seen in a CT or MRI. This damage is often widespread and may leave lesions in many parts of the brain. It can often cause the patient to be in a coma for an extended period of time, depending on the extent of the damage.

Hematoma 

A hematoma is basically blood pooling in the brain, like a bruise but on the brain. This is caused by a blood vessel that is ruptured due to trauma. When the blood collects, it can put pressure on the brain and may even cause further damage to the brain.

Skull Fracture

A skull fracture is when the bone that protects the brain is damaged or broken. Skull fractures are closely monitored to prevent further complications. Depressed fractures may put serious pressure on the brain and may require surgical intervention. In addition, fractures that are leaking cerebrospinal fluid may also require surgery to correct the issue.

Non-Traumatic Acquired Brain Injuries

Non-traumatic acquired brain injuries or ABI is caused by internal factors. When there is a shortage of oxygen to the brain, a hypoxic brain injury can occur. When there is no oxygen, anoxic brain injuries can occur. When blood flow is cut off to the brain, a stroke will occur and may cause brain cells to die. A hemorrhage of the brain is when there is bleeding occurring on the brain.

All brain injuries are serious conditions that require medical attention as soon as possible. Any brain injury has the potential to cause life-altering damage or even death.

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