Brain injuries are some of the worst possible consequences after a car crash. Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) can have long-term health consequences that range from cognitive issues to total dependence on life support machines.
There is such a broad range of consequences and symptoms for brain injuries because they affect different parts of the brain. The injuries themselves also take multiple different forms, each of which can have different health implications for the person hurt.
Learning about the kinds of brain injuries that you or a loved one suffered in a crash will make it easier for you to make informed decisions about treatment, support and financial compensation.
Concussions are well-known brain injuries
Most people think of concussions when they think of brain injuries because they are arguably the best-known and most common of brain injuries. Concussions involve the swelling of the brain because it strikes the inside of your skull during a crash. People do often recover from concussion injuries, but severe or repeated concussions could have long-term consequences.
A brain hemorrhage involves uncontrollable bleeding
If an injury to your head or brain causes bleeding on the brain, it may be a bit before you notice symptoms. However, whether you develop bleeding in the space around your brain or inside the tissue of your brain itself, hemorrhages can cause headaches and lead to lasting brain injury. If you struck your head or the car moved violently during the crash, you may be at risk for bleeding on the brain.
Clotting can be as dangerous as bleeding
Clotting helps prevent you from bleeding to death after an injury, but improper clotting can cause many medical issues. A hematoma is a small group of clotted blood cells. A hematoma in the brain can have catastrophic effects and cause long-term damage.
Edema is dangerous internal swelling
Any tissue that experiences trauma can develop swelling or edema as a result. Those whose vehicles roll or spin may have a higher risk for this kind of injury. Edema of the brain can be particularly dangerous because it forces the brain to push up against the skull as the swelling worsens.
People can also develop diffuse axonal injuries that cause swelling of the brain without bleeding or skull fractures, which can damage the brain severely. Getting a proper diagnosis for a brain injury is the first step toward reducing how severe that injury is and its impact on your life.