Content on this page requires a newer version of Adobe Flash Player.

Get Adobe Flash player

ADHD   |   DEPRESSION  |   TRAUMATIC BRAIN INJURY   |   PROVIDERS   |   BECOME A PROVIDER Home   |   About Us  |   Contact Us   |   Provider Log-in

Defining Traumatic Brain Injury

According to the Brain Injury Association of America, a traumatic brain injury is defined as 'an insult to the brain, not of a degenerative or congenital nature but caused by an external physical force, that may produce a diminished or altered state of consciousness, which results in an impairment of cognitive abilities or physical functioning. It can also result in the disturbance of behavioral or emotional functioning. These impairments may be either temporary or permanent and cause partial or total functional disability or psychosocial maladjustment."

This definition refers to injuries generally caused by an accident or an act of violence resulting in either an open or closed head injury. An acquired brain injury ' that is, one caused by a change in the body on a cellular level from a tumor or stroke ' can be equally devastating. Infection, lack of oxygen, and a metabolic disorder from ingesting harmful chemicals or toxins, can also result in damage to brain tissue. But according to the online, the three causes that claim the greatest number of victims are:

Open Head Injury

This condition always involves penetration of the skull from a bullet, or an object that's sharp and/or heavy enough to open the bone housing the delicate tissue of the brain. While the damage in this type of trauma tends to be focused at the penetration site, an open head injury can still be as serious as that of a closed head injury.

Closed Head Injury

Typically a closed head injury occurs when a person slips and falls, is in a vehicle that crashes, or is physically shaken. In such cases the skull may remain intact but the damage can be more diffuse than that experienced with an open head injury

Deceleration Injuries ' (Diffuse Axonal Injury)

If a person moves through space rapidly and then stops suddenly, the quick acceleration, followed by a rapid deceleration, may force the brain to bounce back and forth inside the skull. As a result of this movement nerve fibers within the brain can be pulled apart, shredded, and permanently destroyed. Such injuries can be the result of a car or motorcycle crash and are also seen in infants and small children who are the victims of Shaken Baby Syndrome. When the nerve fibers are shredded they may release certain chemicals that cause further injury to brain tissues.

Whatever the cause of TBI, it can result in various functional impairments depending on the areas of the brain that have been affected. If severe, these disturbances may ultimately result in permanent damage, coma, or death.

Merln Hurd PhD; BCN, QEEGT

86 University Place, 8th Floor
New York, NY 10003
» View profile...


328 Broadway
Cambridge, MA 02138
» View profile...

Center for Personal Growth

472 Kings Highway
Valley Cottage, NY 10989
» View profile...