Of all possible auto accident injuries, those to the head are the most serious. A brain injury, sometime referred to as a closed-head injury, occurs when some outside force traumatizes the brain. If permanent, the patient will never regain some of the brain's normal functions, which could affect basic, day-to-day activities. Nerve damage and skull fractures also are frequently associated with such injuries.
Because of the widespread use of airbags today, brain injuries are more commonly sustained in side-impact collisions versus head-on or rear-end collisions.
The effects of brain injuries range from none or a mild concussion to a permanent loss of cognitive or motor skills.
Diagnosing a brain injury always should be done by a medical doctor. A diagnostic imaging test such as a CT scan or MRI reveals the extent of the injury. If the injury is mild, the patient can recuperate at home by using ice on the wound to reduce swelling and taking pain relievers.
Symptoms of head trauma vary. Symptoms of mild head injuries include a brief loss of consciousness, headaches, blurred vision, nausea and vomiting. Symptoms of serious head injuries include a prolonged loss of consciousness, nausea, vomiting, slurred speech, disorientation, blurred vision and seizures.