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Brain Trauma

Concussion

This is a form of head injury that usually results from trauma to the brain. Patients may or may not lose consciousness at the time of the injury. It can be associated with memory loss or behavioral dysfunction.

There are usually no appreciable long term sequelae; however, some patients can experience forgetfulness, mental slowness or persistent headaches.

Contusion

Head injury can result in contusions or bruising of the brain. Typically, these are treated nonsurgically; however, for expanding symptomatic lesions, surgical remedies can be used. Some patients may require rehabilitation for long term sequelae.

Hemorrhage

Subarachnoid

Can result from trauma or non-traumatic causes. These patients present with sudden onset and severe headaches. Nausea, vomiting, neck pain and altered consciousness can occur. Non-traumatic cases can result from vascular injuries such as aneurysm rupture. Diagnosis can be made by spinal tap, CT or MRI. The treatment varies depending on the causative issue. Aneurysms require treatment depending on their size by open surgery to clip them or endovascular means to coil or internally obliterate them.

Subdural

Results from trauma to the head. Blood products accumulate between on the surface of the brain and below one of the covering layers of the brain. Depending on size, symptoms and location, these typically are treated by surgical drainage and correction of any bleeding issues by medical means.

Epidural

Similar presentation as the subdural hematoma, but the location is above the brain covering layer called the dura. Usually from trauma which causes a break in a blood vessel. These also require drainage based on location, size and patients’ symptoms.