Injuries are very common, especially head injuries are one of the leading causes of death and disability in adults. As per surveys conducted, 1.7 million people suffer from head injuries every year and this estimation is increasing day by day.
Head Injury is any trauma to head other than superficial injuries to face. It results in high morbidity & mortality. Head injuries are an important cause of loss of young people at their productive age.
Causes of Head Injury-
A head injury can occur due to many reasons. Some common causes of these head injuries are:
Fall from height
Symptoms of Head Injury-
A head injury is followed by various symptoms depending upon the intensity of the injury. Here is a list of the possible symptoms of brain injuries:
Nausea and vomiting, fatigue or sleepiness, severe headache, confusion, amnesia, loss of consciousness, seizures, loss of muscle control or paralysis in the part of the body controlled by the part of the brain that is affected, coma, dilation of the pupils and disturbance of vision, Cerebrospinal fluids might come out of the ears and nose, sometimes accompanied by blood, difficulty in breathing, low pulse rate, increase in blood pressure, difficulty in swallowing, loss of hearing, problems in cognitive functions.
Brain damage is a process, not an event. 80% are minor head injuries, 10% are moderate head injuries and 10% are major head injuries.
Management of Head Injury-
Diagnosis of a brain injury has to be detailed and very quick at the same time. It always comes under emergency cases. Some of the steps involved are:
Glasgow Coma Scale
Pupillary reaction to light
Brain stem reflex tests
Head to toe examination
CT scan of head is the initial study of choice. MRI Brain is helpful in cases of non-haemorrhagic contusions, diffuse axonal injury and deep lesions.
Head injuries with intracranial hematomas causing significant mass effect
Massive cerebral edema
Precautions for Head Injury
Use Helmets- both riders
Use Seat Belts
Keep vehicle speed under control
Follow traffic rules
Take adequate precautions during trekking, diving
No head injury is minor enough to be neglected nor severe enough to be given up.
Head injuries take time to heal, but medical treatment along with neurosurgery can aid the process of recovery and also help a person to lead a healthy life in the future. Most young patients recover fully, while some older patients or patients with preexisting neurological conditions live with a degree of disability.