1.11 Take home messages

  • Traumatic Brain Injury is acquired brain injury that is caused by external physical force resulting in open or closed head injuries that result in impairments. It does not include congenital or degenerative brain injuries or diseases.

  • The peak incidence of TBI is in the 15-25 yr old age range with male:female ratio of 3:1. The main cause of TBI is road accidents.

  • The brain is comprised of a variety of areas that control different functions. These areas must work together to be able to control the bodies activities.

  • TBI causes both primary injuries, such as lacerations and bruising of the brain caused by the initial injury, and secondary complications which can occur later and cause further brain damage.

  • The process of recovery from severe TBI includes coma, post-traumatic amnesia (PTA), lucidity and recovery, and retrograde amnesia. The severity of TBI is measured by the duration of PTA.

  • Rehabilitation helps the person make the most of recovery that occurs spontaneously. It involves 3 stages - acute management, community re-integration, and social rehabilitation.

  • The four main categories of long term impairments caused by TBI are motor sensory, communication, cognition, and behaviour / personality.

  • Most TBI patients return to their families. Aspects of both the patients and the families life will be affected, which can put stress on family members.

  • There are a variety of services available to help people with TBI and their families