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Head injuries 

Head injuries
Chapter:
Head injuries
Author(s):

Jason Smith

, Ian Greaves

, and Keith M Porter

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199543328.003.0008
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date: 21 September 2019

Neurological assessment 118

Pathophysiology of brain injury 124

Classification of brain injuries 126

Management of head injuries 130

Outcome after brain injuries 136

Summary 136

Further reading 136

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is the world’s leading cause of morbidity and mortality in individuals under the age of 45. It is also an important disease of the elderly who are anatomically and physiologically predisposed to more severe injuries and worse outcomes from smaller transfers of energy. The insidious onset of pathology in the elderly can often result in the seriousness of their condition being overlooked. Whilst it is the remit of public health advisors and politicians to reduce the incidence of TBI (by enforcing speed limits and the wearing of helmets), it is the remit of clinicians to reduce the secondary brain injury that follows. One-third of patients who die from TBI will talk or obey commands between their injury and their death which implies that the primary injury ...

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