Acquired brain injury (ABI) is an umbrella term for any brain injury that happens, or is acquired, after someone is born. An ABI can change the brain’s nerve cell activities temporarily or for the long-term. Injuries can range widely. A person with ABI may experience vomiting and dizziness, or on the more severe spectrum, brain death. Under the ABI umbrella, there are two types of brain injuries: traumatic and non-traumatic brain injury.
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is caused by severe impact. The blow to the head or body can rattle the brain due to sudden movement or momentum changes. Concussions are the most typical injury from TBIs, and they are common sports injuries. Symptoms from a concussion may not appear immediately, and most people eventually recover in full. The Centers for Disease Control reports 812,000 children age 17 or younger, were treated in emergency departments for concussions or TBIs in 2014, the latest data available. In the general population, though, a total of 2.87 million emergency department visits, hospitalizations and deaths were attributed to TBIs.
Two other types of TBIs are important to consider. Contusions cause brain bruising, resulting in bleeding and swelling. A more serious TBI is a diffuse axonal injury (DAI), which causes sudden rotational forces in the brain, which can tear the brain’s axons, or nerve fibers. The damage can be microscopic but still extensive.
These are closed TBIs, where the skull remains intact. Here are some common ways to get a closed TBI.
These TBIs are closed brain injuries, but penetrating brain injuries can cause TBIs as well. When the skull is broken or something enters it, this can lead to a penetrating TBI. A common cause of penetrating TBIs is a gunshot wound.
Non-Traumatic Brain Injury
A non-traumatic brain injury is another kind of ABI. This type causes brain damage due to internal factors, like lack of oxygen or pressure from a tumor. Non-traumatic brain injuries can be broken down further by whether or not it’s related to oxygen deficiencies. Anoxic injuries are when the brain doesn’t receive any oxygen, whereas hypoxic injuries are when the brain receives some, but inadequate levels of oxygen. Examples of non-traumatic brain injuries include:
Since different brain parts control different functions, the ABI location can affect the symptoms and outcome. The lobes and hemispheres control emotions, speech, spatial perceptions, memory, movement and body functions like the heart rate.
Here are some common symptoms a person with an ABI might experience. Of course, these could vary widely depending on where the ABI occurred, and how severe it was.
If you or someone you love is experiencing symptoms from a potential ABI, it’s critical to seek immediate medical attention. The Seraph Medical team includes a diverse group of physicians and scientists working together to diagnose and treat patients with nerve damage due to a history of ABI. Not all symptoms appear immediately, and the extent of a person’s injury can be better understood after undergoing a comprehensive medical evaluation with diagnostic testing.
When receiving an assessment from the Seraph Medical team, the patient first receives a complete neurological examination followed by a magnetic resonance imaging scan (MRI) and/or a computed topography (CT) scan. These are the gold standards for assessing brain damage and trauma. When the results are available, the team can meet and review the findings, in order to develop a customized treatment plan.
We are a team of highly qualified physicians and scientists who treat patients with chronic medical conditions by combining traditional medicine with various integrative, science-based treatments that delay or reverse the advancement of life-threatening, chronic medical conditions.