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What are the different grades of brain injuries?

When you suffer from a traumatic brain injury, that injury is graded. The grade of the brain injury is determined by the physical, sensory and cognitive symptoms that you experience. Brain injuries can be classified as mild, moderate or severe. Each of these classifications has specific considerations.

What is a mild traumatic brain injury?

A mild traumatic brain injury is one that is associated with a loss of consciousness for at least a few seconds, and up to a few minutes. In the event there isn't a loss of consciousness, the person might be disoriented, confused, or dazed. Other symptoms of this type of traumatic brain injury include difficulty sleeping, drowsiness, dizziness, sensitivity to sound or light and trouble concentrating.

What is a moderate to severe traumatic brain injury?

A moderate to severe traumatic brain injury is one that is associated with the loss of consciousness that lasts from minutes to hours. Dilation of the pupils, fluid draining from the ear, headache, vomiting, confusion, slurred speech, coma, seizures and an inability to wake from sleep are some of the symptoms that might occur.

When do these symptoms show up?

Brain injuries can be clinically interesting because the symptoms might appear immediately, but they can also appear hours, days or even weeks later. This is why careful monitoring is crucial after a head injury occurs.

The medical care necessary for brain injuries can be complex. This might mean taking time off of work to make it to appointments or simply just to recover. In some cases, people who suffer from brain injuries might decide to seek compensation to help with the costs of care.

Source: Mayo Clinic, "Traumatic brain injury," accessed July 15, 2016

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