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Secondary injuries are possible after brain injuries

All of the effects of a brain injury won't necessarily show up right at the time of the injury. There are some effects, known as secondary injuries, that can show up as soon as 12 hours after the primary brain injury or as long as 10 days after the primary brain injury. These secondary injuries can be devastating.

Many of the secondary injuries that occur after a brain injury are caused by the body's response to the injury. One of the natural responses is the inflammatory response. This can cause inflammation in the brain and other areas of the body that were affected by the accident.

One of the secondary injuries that can occur is increased intracranial pressure, which occurs when the brain swells within the skull. This swelling forces the brain to push against the skull. In some cases, such as when there are focal contusions, treatment with a class of medications known as glutamate antagonists might be used.

Other treatments, such as magnesium therapy and other drug treatments, might also help to minimize the damages that secondary injuries cause. In some cases, lowering the core temperature of the patient can help to reduce the incidence of secondary injuries. This can help to lower the neurochemical response that occurs during the period after the trauma. This also lowers the metabolism, which can also minimize injuries.

If you or your loved one have suffered from a brain injury, you should make sure that you are aware of the possibile injuries that might occur after the accident. These can increase the medical care necessary, which can increase the expense of proper treatment. Seeking compensation might help you to reduce the amount you have to pay for the care.

Source: University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, "Overview: Incidence and Classification: Secondary Injury," accessed March 30, 2016

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