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Struck Your Head in a Fall? Look out for Head Trauma

Struck Your Head in a FallAround 1.7 million people all over the world suffer from brain trauma each year. According to Harvard Health, each year, head injuries lead to more than 2 million emergency department visits in the United States, including more than 72,000 deaths. Thousands of people with moderate or severe head injuries suffer disabilities or require extended hospital care, which is why neurology services in Brooklyn offer head trauma treatment.

Identifying Head Trauma

Head trauma is actually a shortened and informal term for traumatic brain injury (TBI). If you have hit your head in a fall, you should watch out for head trauma. But how do you know you have suffered brain injury? If you are injured in an accident, you would see a doctor and get treatment. But even if you believe you are recovering, you should pay attention to your body and keep a lookout for neurological symptoms. Head trauma is a neurological condition and the symptoms don’t appear right away. That’s why it is important to learn to identify the symptoms.

Recognizing Symptoms

Symptoms of head trauma vary, and could include headache, memory loss, and momentary loss of consciousness, coma, and even paralysis. While the primary stage of the injury happens when the head has had the impact with the hard object, the secondary stage can be caused by neuro-physiological changes that could happen even days after the primary injury. Mild concussions or brain injuries can be dealt with easily, in just a few hours. But treatment for more serious injury takes much longer and could involve surgery. That’s why it’s important to see a neurologist as soon as you suspect severe trauma symptoms.

Head injury can cause different types of symptoms based on the type of injury, its severity and its location. Symptoms can range from vomiting, headache,and a stiff neck to trouble moving the limbs, confusion, loss of consciousness, and even seizures.

Seek Medical Attention as Soon as Possible

Head injuries need immediate medical attention. So if a loved one suffers a head injury, either call for emergency help or request a friend or family member for help to take them to an emergency department. Speed matters. The faster you get to the hospital, the better.

Even if the trauma symptoms aren’t quite pronounced, an impact with the head calls for an immediate checkup. That’s because traumatic brain injuries could bring about nerve damage and cognitive impairments. The risk is particularly greater in elderly individuals, particularly those 75 years of age or older.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Neurological examination focuses on assessing the various faculties of the brain, such as the consciousness level, the body balance that the brain helps to maintain, memory power, etc. After the initial reactions are checked, physicians will decide whether further testing is needed. This testing would involve MRI and CT scan to assess the extent of the brain damage.

At advanced multispecialty healthcare centers, physicians will develop a treatment plan customized to the needs of the patient. Treatment will vary depending on the extent of the injury and is usually focused on ensuring that the brain gets adequate flow of blood. Any blocked airways need to be cleared. Medications such as diuretics, anti-seizure drugs and muscle relaxants may be prescribed to deal with secondary brain damages. In the case of severe brain injury, surgery is usually the only alternative.

Getting Back to Normalcy

Rehabilitation services in Brooklyn ensure that patients with traumatic brain injury get back to regular activities and normalcy. Following the treatment, physical therapy, relaxation techniques and procedures such as transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) are used to help the individual regain mobility and balance. These procedures are also followed when the head trauma is mild and no other treatment is prescribed.

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