Types of Brain Injuries

March is brain injury awareness month designed to deepen awareness of how a severe brain injury can impact someone’s life. During this time, various organizations provide information on how to prevent serious brain injuries from occurring.

What is a Traumatic Brain Injury?

A traumatic brain injury occurs when someone endures a sudden jolt or physical blow to the head that injures the brain. A brain injury can affect the entire brain or only a tiny portion. Brain injuries range from slight concussions to fatal injuries. 

Types of Brain Injuries

There are two main types of brain injuries, closed and penetrating. A closed brain injury means the injury occurred without anything penetrating the head and skull. These types of injuries are often caused by quick back or forward motion (for example, from a car accident, fall, or sports injury) or shaking rapidly (shaken baby syndrome). A penetrating injury occurs when something sharp, like a bullet, pierces the skull and damages the brain. 

Primary brain injuries occur at the time of the accident. A secondary brain injury occurs later due to an accident and days or weeks after the primary brain injury. 

Some Causes of Brain Injuries

Although there are many causes for brain injuries, some of the most common include:

Traumatic Brain Injury (resulting from an accident)

  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Falls
  • Sports accidents
  • Gunshot wounds
  • Workplace accidents
  • Child abuse
  • Domestic violence
  • Military service

Non-Traumatic Brain Injury (resulting from a naturally occurring event or hereditary disease)

  • Stroke
  • Meningitis
  • Seizure
  • Encephalitis
  • Electric shock
  • Drowning
  • Drug overdose
  • Tumors
  • Carbon monoxide poisoning
  • Aneurysm
  • Metabolic disorders
  • Infection or disease

Many of the causes above can be avoided.

Results of a Serious Brain Injury

Unfortunately, after a brain injury, the victim may suffer dozens of symptoms, such as:

  • Confusion
  • Coma
  • Difficulty solving problems
  • Shortened attention
  • Decreased awareness
  • Paralysis
  • Weakness
  • Poor balance
  • Speech issues
  • Poor concentration
  • Tremors
  • Changes in hearing, vision, taste, or smell
  • Loss of sensation
  • Loss of mobility (especially on one side or the other)
  • Vision problems
  • Difficulty with daily routines and tasks (getting dressed, paying bills, taking meds, etc.)
  • Social issues
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Frequent headaches
  • Emotional changes (depression, anxiety, apathy)
  • Epilepsy

Some of these symptoms can be treated, while others may be lifelong. Some may improve with time, and others may get worse. 

Most often, a physician will diagnose a brain injury through an MRI (which detects changes in blood supply to the brain or swelling) and an EEG, which can diagnose abnormal electrical activity in the brain’s nerve cells. Sometimes doctors will use a CT to determine the extent of the damage.

What to Do After a Brain Injury

If your brain injury was caused by an accident, you might have some legal recourse. Contact Baron, Herskowitz, and Cohen today to help with your case. We want to help you get the compensation you deserve for all your pain and suffering. 

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