Understanding Brain Injury — Common Questions
The NRI — Neurologic Rehabilitation Institute — at Brookhaven Hospital, has put together an incredibly comprehensive set of FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) on brain injury.
What is a severe brain injury?
A severe brain injury occurs when trauma to the brain produces a significant neurological injury resulting in physiologic changes to a person’s brain. Four types of injury may cause trauma to the brain.
Brain injury can be misunderstood, even by the professionals trying to help the victims, as well as their families. One of the biggest questions most patients and families have, is how will the injury affect the patient’s life. Questions arise over the injured’s ability to fully recover, and be able to lead the same productive, active lifestyle they enjoyed before.
How does a severe brain injury affect the individual?
A severe brain injury produces physiologic, cognitive, emotional, psychological and behavioral changes. Some individuals develop medical problems related to specific deficits caused by the brain injury. The part of the brain that is injured determines the long-term effects. Often a severe brain injury involves multiple areas of the brain, resulting in multiple disabilities. Physical functions can be affected, such as standing, walking and eye-hand coordination. Cognitive changes can include issues with memory and language. Personality traits can be affected. People may lose their natural inhibitions and behavior control, leading to inappropriate behavior. The effects of a brain injury can be extremely widespread, impacting all areas of a person’s life and requiring extensive medical and rehabilitative treatment.
The FAQs also covers less-discussed issues relating to brain injury, such as minor injuries, and injuries to specific sections of the brain.
In order to better help those who suffered brain injury, we must stay informed. This is the only way that we can tailor treatment to the injured’s needs, and make sure they receive adequate care — care that will lead to rehabilitation, and a successful life after injury.