A traumatic brain injury is one that causes a severe disruption to the normal functioning of the brain and is usually caused by a blow, jolt or bump to the head such as when the head comes suddenly and violently into contact with an object or where something pierces the skull and goes into brain tissue. While symptoms can range from mild to severe, major traumatic incidents can lead to unconsciousness, coma and even death.
Clinical signs that someone has suffered a traumatic injury to the brain that has resulted in a significant alteration in normal brain function includes:
• Losing of, or experiencing reduced, consciousness
• Episodes of amnesia where a person cannot recall events just before or after the injury
• Evidence of neurological deficits such as displaying muscle weakness, loss of vision or a slurring of speech
• Major alteration in mental state such as experiencing disorientation, inability to think clearly or having difficulty focusing or concentrating