The Difference between Open and Closed Brain Injury

Jan 24, 2017 @ 02:00 PM — by William Chanfrau, Jr.

A brain scanWhether minor or severe, a brain injury can completely change a person's life. There are many different types of traumatic brain injuries, two of which include open and closed brain injuries. Both open and closed brain injuries can occur in the work place, while playing sports, or from an assault. Brain injuries may lead to permanent disability or even death. An attorney can help the victims of a brain injury, or their loved ones, seek compensation for pain and suffering or other damages against the responsible party. For more information about open versus closed brain injuries and your legal options, contact the Daytona Beach, FL law firm of Chanfrau & Chanfrau.

What Is an Open Brain Injury?

Open brain injuries occur when an object goes through the skull and penetrates the brain. Open brain injuries typically affect a specific area of the brain, making them a focal injury. Open brain injuries are extremely dangerous and may result in permanent disability or death.

The Causes of Open Brain Injuries

Open brain injuries may be caused by a violent act, like a shooting or stabbing. In other cases, an open brain injury can be caused by a piece of bone breaking off from the skull as a result of a skull fracture. Skull fractures may occur as a result of a fall, sports-related accident, a car or motorcycle accident, or a blow to the head.

The Symptoms of an Open Brain Injury

An open brain injury is a serious injury that can cause permanent damage to victims, including death. Some possible symptoms of an open brain injury include:

  • Meningitis, an infection of the brain's membranes or spinal column
  • Seizures
  • Paralysis
  • Dementia
  • Coma
  • Death

What Is a Closed Brain Injury?

With closed brain injuries, nothing physically penetrates the brain, making them different from open brain injuries. A closed brain injury may occur when the force from a trauma to the head causes the brain to hit the skull. Closed brain injuries can be mild to severe depending on the force in which the brain hit the inside of the skull and which area of the brain was impacted. Additionally, closed brain injuries may be focal, damaging a localized area, or diffuse, affecting areas throughout the brain.

The Causes of Closed Brain Injuries

There are many possible causes of closed brain injuries. Some of the most common causes include:

  • Car or motorcycle accidents
  • Sports-related injury
  • A slip or fall
  • Work-related injury
  • Assault

The Symptoms of Closed Brain Injuries

The symptoms of a closed brain injury are generally similar to a concussion and will vary depending on the severity of the injury. The symptoms of a mild closed brain injury may take several days to manifest, but will show immediately in a severe injury. Some symptoms to be aware of include:

  • Headache or dizziness
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Dilated pupils or vision issues
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Convulsions
  • Breathing problems
  • Speech or language problems
  • Behavioral or emotional changes
  • Leakage of cerebrospinal fluid from the nose or ears
  • Death

Learn More about Your Legal Options

When an open or closed brain injury occurs in the workplace, as a result of violent crime, or due to someone else's negligence, you may have a personal injury case. A personal injury and wrongful death attorney can help victims of brain injuries or their families seek compensation for damages, including lost wages, medical fees, and pain and suffering. To learn more about your legal options, we encourage you to contact the attorneys of Chanfrau & Chanfrau today.

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