A head injury occurs as a result of trauma to the scalp, skull, or brain, and can be classified as closed (no cut to the skin) or penetrating (the skin and/or skull bone is broken). Symptoms of head injury can occur immediately after trauma or can develop slowly over time. Your brain surgeon in Delhi may perform a physical and neurological examination along with a head CT scan, a head MRI, or a head x-ray to assess the nature and severity of your injury and determine the appropriate treatment. While patients with minor head injuries can be observed and treated with medications, more serious traumatic brain injuries may require urgent attention to remove blood clots or to release pressure on the brain.
What is a Head Injury?
A head injury occurs as a result of trauma to the scalp, skull, or brain. Head injuries are classified as closed, in which there is no cut or laceration of the skin, or penetrating, in which the skin and/or bone of the skull is broken. Traumatic brain injuries range from mild (called mild traumatic brain injuries) to severe. Symptoms of head injuries can occur immediately after trauma or can develop slowly over several hours or days. Specific symptoms and types of head injuries include:
Concussion: Also called mild traumatic head injury. This includes brain injuries that are caused by a blow to the head or body, a fall, or other trauma that moves or shakes the brain within the skull. People who suffer from concussions do not always exhibit symptoms that are apparent to others. Symptoms of a concussion and minor head injuries include:
- loss of consciousness for a few seconds to a few minutes
- confusion; memory and / or concentration problems
- memory loss (amnesia) of events before or immediately after injury
- nausea and vomiting
- altered level of consciousness, such as being drowsy or difficulty waking up
Contusion: bruise of brain tissue, often associated with swelling (edema) and an increase in pressure within the skull, called intracranial pressure (ICP). Symptoms of high pressure inside the brain and skull include:
- dilated pupils
- high blood pressure
- slow pulse and abnormal breathing
Fracture: a crack or break in the skull, with or without a skin laceration. Symptoms of a skull fracture include:
- skull deformity
- bruise around the eyes or behind the ear
- clear liquid dripping from the nose or ear
Bleeding: Bleeding in the brain, also called hemorrhage, is a life-threatening condition, and in many cases may require urgent attention by a neurosurgeon in Delhi. Bleeding from the brain occurs when a blood vessel in the brain ruptures, causing bleeding within the surrounding tissue, swelling, and increased intracranial pressure. Blood can also pool and form a clot, called a bruise. In an epidural hematoma, coagulation occurs between the inside of the skull and the strong outer membranous covering of the brain (called the dura mater). The blood that accumulates under the subdural hematoma. Symptoms of bleeding in the brain, which may gradually get worse or come on suddenly include:
- sudden and severe headache
- repeated nausea or vomiting
- weakness in the arm or leg
- loss of consciousness
Sharp injuries (also called diffuse axonal damage): This type of injury results when the brain violently sways against the inside of the skull. The nerve fibers that extend from the central body of a nerve cell are stretched or twisted, permanently damaging brain cells and causing other complications within the nervous system. The main symptom of a cutting injury is a prolonged loss of consciousness. In infants and young children who cannot communicate, signs of head injury include:
- a child who is not acting or behaving normally
- scalp lacerations and swelling
Patients exhibiting symptoms of a head injury should seek immediate medical attention and consult a brain surgeon in Delhi.
How is Head Injury Diagnosed and Evaluated?
The treatment of head injuries depends on the type of injury and the condition of the patient. To assess the severity of a head injury, a brain surgeon in Delhi may perform a physical and neurological exam, and imaging tests such as:
CT scan of the head: Computed tomography (CT) scanning combines special x-ray equipment with sophisticated computers to produce multiple images or photographs of the head and brain. Doctors use CT scans of the head to detect bleeding, swelling, brain injury, and skull fractures.
Head MRI: Nuclear magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) uses a powerful magnetic field, radiofrequency pulses, and a computer to produce detailed photographs of organs, soft tissues, bones, and virtually all other internal body structures. In certain patients, the doctor uses MRI of the brain, including special MRI scanning techniques called diffusion imaging, diffusion tensor, and MRI spectrocopy, to help diagnose brain lesions that have no apparent abnormalities on an MRI scan. more routine.
X-rays of the head: X-rays involve exposing a part of the body to a small dose of ionizing radiation to produce pictures of the inside of the body. Doctors occasionally use x-rays of the head to detect and evaluate skull fractures. However, this type of examination is currently performed rarely, since it does not have the ability to assess the brain at all, and a CT scan can show most skull fractures more clearly than head X-rays. However, it is clear to clinicians that it is more important to determine if an underlying brain injury exists in order to determine the appropriate treatment for the patient. For this purpose, CT, and if MRI is necessary, are the preferred techniques for taking images.
How is a Head Injury Treated?
Consider seeking immediate medical attention with any form of head injury, as the consequences of unrecognized or improperly treated head injuries can be potentially serious. Patients with minor head injuries will be watched and treated for symptoms, including pain medication to treat the headache and medication to control nausea and vomiting. If you have symptoms of a simple concussion, you should avoid excessive activity. Your brain surgeon in Delhi will advise you on when to return to your normal daily routine and sports activities. More severe, traumatic brain injuries will require individualized and often emergency care, such as surgery to remove blood clots and relieve pressure on the brain.