Head injuries include all damage to the skull, scalp or brain following a traumatic incident. While mild head injuries may result in few to no complications, severe and moderate head injuries can result in mental impairment, permanent disability and death.
Among the leading causes of head injuries are motor vehicle accidents.
An intracranial hematoma refers to blood collecting within the skull. This can happen when blood vessels burst in the brain or during a motor vehicle collision. As the blood accumulates, it begins to press against the brain. An intracranial hematoma can appear immediately or take weeks to appear. As time passes, you may experience progressively worse headaches, dizziness, drowsiness and paralysis. To treat an intracranial hematoma, doctors often must perform surgery to drain the blood.
Concussions are common head injuries that result from the impact of an accident. They occur when a strong enough force causes the brain to bounce against the skull. Some mild concussions require little treatment, whereas others can result in long-term symptoms or postconcussive syndrome.
Skull fractures refer to any break within the skull. Skull fractures, like all head injuries, can range in severity. Linear fractures are the most common and do not cause the bone to shift or move. Depressed fractures, conversely, cause the skull to sink from trauma. In severe fractures, pieces of bone can puncture the brain.
Not all head injuries present symptoms directly following the accident. It could be hours to days following when you experience headaches, confusion, memory loss or other symptoms associated with head injuries.