When someone suffers a significant brain injury there is really one of four classic ways that this occurs:
- Nerve Damage. This is where there is damage to the brain cells themselves and many times it's the neurons or the tissues that make the brain function.
- Laceration. This is actually a tearing of the brain tissue or the tiny blood vessels that connect and infuse the brain with blood. This results in bleeding.
- Blood Clot. When a blood vessel bleeds the blood accumulates and coagulates and it creates a clot. Depending on where that clot is located and the size of that clot will determine how and what part of the brain function is actually affected.
- Swelling or Bruising. This can be an indirect consequence of brain injury. Classically, when we injure ourselves the body's response is to rush fluids, blood and other products to try to cushion and heal the area. When that happens in the brain it increases the volume of the brain in that area, it presses on the brain tissue and many times compresses the brain against the skull.
These are the four major ways that someone who is involved in some type of accident ends up with a brain injury that affects their life, their personality or their brain function in some way.