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Common Traumatic Brain Injuries happen on a daily basis. Television medical dramas are peppered with diagnoses, injuries, and treatments, but when you hear a medical term for a traumatic brain injury (TBI) because it has happened to you or someone you love, the significance of the situation is altered tremendously. A TBI can occur during an auto accident, fall, collision with another person or object, while playing sports, or from shaking, a direct blow to the head, a gunshot wound, or whiplash. The type of head injury sustained in any of these situations will vary from person to person.
Head injuries can range from minor to moderate to severe, but every brain injury is unique. Not every person who has suffered a head injury will respond in the same manner or exhibit the same symptoms as someone else with a similar injury. They type and amount of force that impacts the head will affect whether one, more, or all functional areas of the brain are affected. Symptoms can include everything from loss of consciousness, confusion, physical impairments, cognitive impairments, behavioral changes, and neurological deficits. Some TBIs, especially one or more suffered close together in a time period, can even be fatal.
Here are some of the most common types of traumatic brain injuries:
Both closed and open head injuries can lead to a concussion, which is the most common type of traumatic brain injury, usually caused when the brain suffers a sudden impact or change in movement, like the jarring movement of a car accident. A person who has suffered a concussion is typically helped by brain injury rehabilitation. Concussions can be difficult to diagnose with tests like a CAT scan, especially if fractures, bleeding, or swelling are not present. It can take anywhere from months to years for a concussion to completely heal.
The second type of common traumatic brain injuries are contusions, which is a direct bruise/bleeding on the brain. Active children often suffer contusions. Athletes develop contusions during rough game play or during contact in a no-contact sport. Some large contusions may need to be surgically removed, but the contusion is often defined by pain, swelling, and discoloration of the skin.
A coup-contrecoup injury involves a head injury that exists at the site of the impact as well as on the opposite side of the brain. Whatever force impacted the head – often a fixed object – not only was great enough to cause a contusion at the site of impact but it was also strong enough to shift the brain and cause it to hit into the other side of the skull, causing a second contusion.
When a person’s head is shaken or rotated severely, a diffuse axonal TBI can be the result. Shaken Baby Syndrome often results in this severe head injury, and car accidents can often cause a diffuse axonal TBI. The injury occurs when the brain moves more slowly than the skull, which results in the tearing of brain structure including nerve tissue. This movement can cause the release of brain chemicals leading to even greater injuries. Such severe shaking can cause coma, brain damage, and even death.
The last type of common traumatic brain injury is when the brain is penetrated by a sharp object that forces bone, hair, skin, and fragments into the brain, a penetration TBI has taken place. This devastating brain injury can occur in a car accident when debris flies through the car. Some penetration injuries are described as “through-and-through” injuries wherein the object enters the skull, goes through the brain, and exits on the other side of the skull, causing not only the penetration injury but also the rupturing of brain tissue. Firearms are the largest cause of death from a traumatic brain injury, according to the CDC.
Contact an Experienced Traumatic Brain Injury Attorney
While these are five of the most commonly named traumatic brain injuries, there are a great deal of TBIs that can occur and they often present differently in every person. In some cases, a TBI isn’t obvious immediately which can lead some people to reject medical attention at the scene of, for instance, a car accident. An asymptomatic TBI right after an incident can also lead to misdiagnosis which can ultimately result in serious health problems for the sufferer.
Common Traumatic Brain Injuries can be life-altering, affecting a person’s ability to work or function normally, which impacts the ability to earn money, maintain a relationship, and live happily. If you or someone you love has suffered a TBI because of a car accident, sports injury, or otherwise, visit an experienced and expert traumatic brain injury attorney. Contact Michigan traumatic brain injury attorney David Christensen today.