One of the crucial fields in neurosurgery is neurotrauma. Head injuries are quite common among them. Head injuries may even cause disabilities and death in people. It may vary according to the severity of the injury. The term head injury is a vast area which covers injuries that occur to the brain, scalp, skull blood vessels and the underlying tissues in the head. Usually, head injuries are termed as brain injuries or traumatic brain injuries, according to the extent of the head trauma.
There are different types of head injuries. It may include:
- Skull Fracture
- Depressed skull fracture
- Diastatic Skull Fractures
- Basilar Skull Fracture
- Intracarnial hematoma
- Linear skull fractures etc
Everyone may not have the same symptoms when had an injury on his/her head. Experience of each individual will be different according to the depth and mode of the injury. The common symptoms may include:
- Raised, swollen area from a bump or a bruise
- Sensitivity to noise and light
- Lightheadness and/or dizziness
- Tired eyes
- Alteration in taste
- Blurred vision
- Problems with balance
- Problems with concentration and memory
- Change in sleep patterns
- Sensitivity to noise and light etc.
These symptoms can be seen for mild head injuries. It may not require immediate medical care. Symptoms for moderate to severe head injury will be different from that of the other and it may require immediate medical care. The symptoms for moderate to severe injuries may include:
- Loss of consciousness
- Repeated nausea and vomiting
- Severe headache that does not go away
- Difficulty with walking
- Slurred speech
- Pale skin color
- Seizure or convulsions
- Behavior changes including irritability
- Loss of short-term memory etc.
These symptoms do not only constitute the symptoms of moderate to severe head injury. There are many other symptoms also.
In order to understand the injury completely, the doctor might recommend certain tests for diagnosis apart from the physical exam by the doctor. Other tests include the following:
- Blood tests
- CT Scan
- MRI etc
The mode of treatment will be decided by the doctor based on many factors like your age, medical history, type and severity of injury etc. Mild and moderate head injuries can be cured. Severe injuries might require surgeries. Mainly, surgeries are used to address issues such as:
- To remove hematomas (blood clots)
- To repair skull fractures and
- To open a window in the skull
Surgeries will help the brain tissues from getting additional damages.