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Head Injury

Head Injury - How to prevent?

Head Injury - Causes and Risk Factors

Head Injury - Treatments

Head injury can be mild to severe, and damage to the brain may occur immediately at the time of injury, or develop after the injury due to swelling or further bleeding.

Treatment is individualised, depending on the type, degree and extent of injury.

The common types of head injury and treatment are:

  • Scalp injury where bumps and cuts are sustained on the scalp. Treatments include cold compression and
    suturing.
  • Skull fracture
    There are two types of skull fracture:
    • Undisplaced skull fracture is caused by a direct impact to the skull which causes it to break with no shattered fragments. No surgical treatment is required as the bone will heal by itself.
    • Depressed skull fracture is caused by a direct impact to the skull which causes the shattered bones to be pushed into the brain (Figure 1). Antibiotics and surgery may be needed to prevent further brain injury, bleeding and infection.

Figure 1
Depressed skull fracture 

  • Concussion to the head is caused by a blow or violent shaking of the head. Most people recover without any
    permanent damage. Symptoms such as headache, giddiness, nausea and vomiting may persist but will
    generally get better over time. Treatment includes medication for symptom relief and adequate rest.
  • Contusion is a “bruise” that may cause tissue damage and bleeding (Figure 2).

Figure 2
Contusion or bruising in the brain

  • Haematomas (Blood clots) refer to the collection of blood in one or several locations of the brain. Treatments for contusion and haematomas include observation for worsening of symptoms and removal of blood clots. Prognosis depends on the type, size, and eect of the injuries on the brain (Figure 3 and 4).

Figure 3
Bleeding from artery (Epidural haematoma)

Figure 4
Bleeding from vein (Subdural haematoma)

Head Injury - Preparing for surgery

Head Injury - Post-surgery care

The information provided is not intended as medical advice. Terms of use. Information provided by SingHealth
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