Causes | Symptoms | Treatment
options | Disabilities
Traumatic brain injury (TBI), also called acquired brain
injury, occurs when a sudden trauma causes damage to the brain. TBI can
result when the head suddenly and violently hits an object or when an
object pierces the skull and enters brain tissue.
Symptoms of a TBI can be mild, moderate or severe, depending
on the extent of the damage to the brain. A person with a mild TBI may
remain conscious or may experience a loss of consciousness for a few
seconds or minutes. Other symptoms of mild TBI include headache, confusion,
lightheadedness, dizziness, blurred vision or tired eyes, ringing in
the ears, bad taste in the mouth, fatigue or lethargy, a change in sleep
patterns, behavioral or mood changes, and trouble with memory, concentration,
attention or thinking.
A person with a moderate or severe TBI may show these same
symptoms, but may also have a headache that gets worse or does not go
away, repeated vomiting or nausea, convulsions or seizures, an inability
to awaken from sleep, dilation of one or both pupils of the eyes, slurred
speech, weakness or numbness in the extremities, loss of coordination,
and increased confusion, restlessness or agitation.
Anyone with signs of moderate or severe TBI should receive medical attention
as soon as possible. Treatment is mainly geared toward stabilization
and preventing further injury. Primary concerns include insuring proper
oxygen supply to the brain and the rest of the body, maintaining adequate
blood flow, and controlling blood pressure.
Patients with mild to moderate injuries may receive skull
and neck X-rays to check for bone fractures or spinal instability. For
moderate to severe cases, the imaging test is a computed tomography (CT)
scan. Moderately to severely injured patients receive rehabilitation
that involves individually tailored treatment programs in the areas of
physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech/language therapy, physiatry
(physical medicine), psychology/psychiatry, and social support.
Approximately half of severely head-injured patients will
Disabilities resulting from a TBI depend upon the severity
of the injury, the location of the injury, and the age and general health
of the individual. Some common disabilities include problems with cognition
(thinking, memory, and reasoning), sensory processing (sight, hearing,
touch, taste, and smell), communication (expression and understanding),
and behavior or mental health (depression, anxiety, personality changes,
aggression, acting out, and social inappropriateness). More serious head
injuries may result in stupor, an unresponsive state, but one in which
an individual can be aroused briefly by a strong stimulus, such as sharp
pain; coma, a state in which an individual is totally unconscious, unresponsive,
unaware, and unarousable; vegetative state, in which an individual is
unconscious and unaware of his or her surroundings, but continues to
have a sleep-wake cycle and periods of alertness; and a persistent vegetative
state (PVS), in which an individual stays in a vegetative state for more
than a month.
About Georgia Neurological Surgery | About Georgia Comprehensive Spine Center | Spine Conditions | Neurological Conditions | Treatment | Nonsurgical Spine Care | Spine Surgery | Educational Resources | Patient Center | Contact our Georgia Spine Center | Spine Center Locations in Georgia: Athens, Royston, Toccoa, Demorest, Monroe, Winder, Greensboro
The pictures displayed in www.georgiacomprehensivespine.com are images of physicians, patients and employees who have consented to have their pictures in this website.