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Head Injuries & Concussion

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Student presentation for PDHPE class.

Student presentation for PDHPE class.


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  • 1. Head Injuries Karina Wilson and Concussion
  • 2.
    • There are three main types of head injuries:
    • Concussion: Concussion is usually caused by trauma to the head causing the brain to be “shaken” inside the skull. Concussion is injury to the head area that may cause instant loss of awareness for a few minutes, or up to a few hours after the traumatic event. The most common disorder is a loss of consciousness.
    • Skull fracture: Skull fracture is a break in the skull bone. Skull fractures can be broken up into four main types: Linear skull fractures, depressed skull fractures, diastatic skull fractures and basilar skull fractures. If a fracture causes the bone to move, the displaced bone may press onto the tissue of the brain. This type of fracture often causes brain damage.
    • Intracranial hematoma: There are several type of blood clots in, or around the brain. The different types are classified by their location in the brain. These injuries can range from mild head injuries to quite serious and potentially life-threatening injuries.
    Nature
  • 3.  
  • 4.
    • The causes and risks of head injuries.
    • There are many possible causes for head injuries. The most common causes include bicycles accidents, automobile accidents, falls, and work-related injuries. Contact sports, especially football, are another common source of head injury. Other sports that place a person at risk for head injuries include:
    • Boxing
    • Basketball
    • Baseball
    • Ice hockey
    • Skiing
    • Skateboarding
    • Wrestling
    • Almost any other contact sport
    • Head injuries are more common in an individual with:
    • An altered mental state as a result of drugs or disease.
    • Difficulty walking because of arthritis, leg injury, or neuromuscular disease.
    • Weakness.
    • Loss of balance or poor co-ordination from ageing or disease.
    Nature
  • 5.
    • Head injuries can range from minor lacerations and bruises through to concussion, skull fractures, or bleeding within the skull or brain causing cerebral compression.
    • Penetrating trauma: Sharp instruments may break through the skull. The result of this is penetrating injuries. These type of injuries often require surgery. The initial injury itself may cause immediate death.
    • Blunt head trauma: Injuries like this may be from direct blow or from a rapid deceleration force.
    • Head injuries can be divided into three groups: Fully conscious at the time they are seen; those who have been unconscious since the time of the accident; and those who have been conscious for a period of time following the accident.
    Nature
  • 6.
    • The signs and symptoms of head injuries differ with the type and how severe the injury may be:
    • Minor blunt head injuries may involve symptoms of being ‘dazed’ or brief loss of consciousness. May result in headaches or blurring of vision or nausea and vomiting.
    • Severe blunt head trauma involves loss of consciousness, which can last for several minutes, to many days or longer. Seizures may result.
    • Penetrating traumas may cause immediate, severe symptoms despite a potentially life threatening injury. Death may follow the initial injury.
    Signs and symptoms
  • 7.
    • Overall head injuries:
    • Change in the level of consciousness
    • Bleeding from a wound at the site of the injury
    • A bump or bruising at the site of the injury
    • Confusion
    • Seizures
    • Restlessness
    • Swelling around the eyes, or at site of injury
    • Sleep disorders, including insomnia
    • Fatigue, or Headache
    • Loss of consciousness
    • Possible period of unconsciousness
    • Headache
    • Nausea and vomiting
    • Reduced level of consciousness
    • Visual problems
    • Numbness, tingling
    • Paralysis
    • Convulsions
    • Breathing stops
    • lethargy
    Signs and symptoms
  • 8.
    • Current primary management techniques.
    • The management of a head injury or concussion should be managed as if it was a spinal injury.
    • 1. Monitor breathing and pulse:
    • • casualty unconscious, follow DRABCD
    • • keep casualty’s airway open with fingers (if face badly injured).
    • 2. Support head and neck:
    • • support casualty’s head and neck during movement in case the spine is injured. Keep the head in line with the spine, and prevent movement.
    • 3. Control bleeding:
    • • place sterile pad or dressing over wound
    • • Apply direct pressure to the wound with a clean cloth.
    • • If blood or fluid comes from ear, secure a sterile dressing lightly in place and allow to drain.
    • 4. Lie casualty down:
    • • place casualty in comfortable position with head and shoulders slightly raised
    • • be prepared to turn casualty onto side if they vomit
    • • clear the airway quickly after vomiting.
    • 5. Call 000 for an ambulance.
    Management techniques
  • 9.
    • Encyclopedia of Family Health. Vol.5. Marshall Calvendish Corporations 1998. Italy. Pp 641 – 642
    • Lippmann, J and Natoli, D. First Aid. (2006) Head and facial injuries. Pp40-41.
    • World book. Medical Encyclopedia. Scott Retzer company 1988. America. Pp. 395 – 398.
    • The element family. Encyclopedia of Health. Dr R Sharma 1998. UK. P.254
    • All health answers. Dr. David Taylor 2003. Pp. 392 – 393
    • Health topics. (2007) Head injury . (Online) http://www.healthsystem.virginia.edu/UVAHealth/adult_neuro/headinj.cfm
    • StJohns. (2007) Head injury. (Online) http://www.stjohn.org.au/images/stjohn/information/head%20injury%20june07%20v1.pdf .
    • Medicine health. (2008) Head injury causes. (Online) http://www.emedicinehealth.com/head_injury/page2_em.htm .
    Bibliography