Hello, my name is Dr. Jansen and today we're going to cover some information about TBI, or traumatic brain injury.
TBI occurs when a sudden trauma, such as a blow or a jolt, causes damage to the brain. The damage can be just to one area of the brain, called a focal injury, or located in more than one area of the brain, called a diffuse injury.
TBI can result from a penetrating head injury or a closed head injury. A penetrating injury occurs when an object goes through the skull and enters the brain. A closed injury can occur from any trauma that causes the brain to be violently shaken inside of the skull. A common type of closed head injury suffered in combat is known as a blast injury.
Brain injuries can occur when the head strikes an object, such as a windshield or the ground at a fast rate of speed, or when a flying or falling object strikes the head. Injury to the brain also can occur without a direct blow to the head, for example in cases of severe "whiplash."
The trauma can cause nerve cells in the brain to stretch, tear, or pull apart, making it difficult or impossible for the cells to send messages from one part of the brain to another, and to the rest of the body. TBI can interfere with how the brain works, including thinking, remembering, seeing, and controlling movements. Traumatic brain injury can range from mild to very severe depending on many things, including the force of the trauma, previous brain injuries and how quickly emergency medical treatment is given.