Brain Injuries

What are Brain Injuries?

A brain injury that is not genetic, congenital, degenerative, or caused by birth trauma is known as an acquired brain injury (ABI). This is a sort of brain injury that occurs after a person is born. The brain’s neuronal activity changes as a result of the injury, affecting the physical integrity, metabolic activity, and functional ability of nerve cells in the brain.

Traumatic and non-traumatic are the two forms of acquired brain injury.

An external force that causes a traumatic brain injury (TBI) is defined as a change in brain function or other signs of brain pathology. There are two types of traumatic impact injuries: closed (or non-penetrating) and open (or penetrating).

A non-traumatic brain injury, also known as an acquired brain injury, occurs when the brain is damaged by internal factors such as a lack of oxygen, exposure to toxins, pressure from a tumor, and so on.

Causes of Brain Injuries

  • Falls
  • Assaults
  • Motor Vehicle Accidents
  • Sports/Recreation Injuries
  • Abusive Head Trauma (Shaken Baby Syndrome)
  • Gunshot Wounds
  • Workplace Injuries
  • Child Abuse
  • Domestic Violence
  • Military Actions (Blast Injury)
  • Stroke (Hemorrhage, Blood Clot)
  • Infectious Disease
  • Meningitis
  • Encephalitis
  • Seizure
  • Electric Shock
  • Tumors
  • Metabolic Disorders
  • Neurotoxic Poisoning (Carbon Monoxide, Lead Exposure)
  • Lack of Oxygen (Drowning, Choking, Hypoxic/Anoxic Injury)
  • Drug Overdose
  • Aneurysm

Signs & Symptoms

  • Spinal fluid (thin, clear liquid) coming out of the ears or nose
  • Loss of consciousness 
  • Dilated (the black center of the eye is large and does not get smaller in light) or unequal size of pupils
  • Vision changes (blurred vision or seeing double, not able to tolerate bright light, loss of eye movement, blindness)
  • Dizziness
  • Balance problems
  • Respiratory failure (difficulty breathing)
  • Coma (not alert and unable to respond to others) or semi-comatose state
  • Paralysis, or difficulty moving body parts
  • Weakness
  • Poor coordination
  • Slow pulse
  • Slow breathing rate, with an increase in blood pressure
  • Vomiting
  • Lethargy
  • Headache
  • Confusion
  • Ringing in the ears (tinnitus), or changes in ability to hear
  • Difficulty with thinking skills (difficulty “thinking straight”, memory problems, poor judgment, poor attention span, a slowed thought processing speed)
  • Inappropriate emotional responses (irritability, easily frustrated, inappropriate crying or laughing)
  • Difficulty speaking (slurred speech, difficulty swallowing)
  • Body numbness or tingling
  • Loss of bowel control or bladder control

Information was gathered from: