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Home :: Head Injury

Head Injury

Injury to the head, with or without unconsciousness or other visible signs.

Head injury can be classified as either closed or penetrating. In a closed head injury, the head sustains a blunt force by striking against an object. A concussion is a type of closed head injury that involves the brain.

In a penetrating head injury, an object breaks through the skull and enters the brain. (This object is usually moving at a high speed like a windshield or another part of a motor vehicle.)


In sports, head injury is most common in contact or collision sports, especially football, ice hockey, boxing and wrestling. It is more likely in persons with disorders.

Signs and symptoms

Depends on the extent to injury. The presence or absence of swelling at the injury site is not related to the seriousness of injury. Signs and symptoms include any or all of the following:

  • Drowsiness or confusion.
  • Vomiting and nausea.
  • Blurred vision.
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Pupils of different size.
  • Amnesia or memory lapses.
  • Irritability.
  • Headache.
  • Open wound in the head
  • Bleeding of the scalp if the skin is broken.
  • Weakness in one side or area of the body


  • Medical history and physical exam by a doctor.
  • Laboratory studies of blood and cerebrospinal fluid.
  • X-rays of the skull and neck.
  • Cat scan of the head.


Medical Treatment

  • Careful examination by a doctor to determine the extent of injury.
  • Hospitalization for observation if signs and symptoms are severe.

Home Treatment- After a doctor's examination, the injured person may be sent home-but a responsible person must stay with the person and watch for serious symptoms. The first 24 hours after injury are critical, although serious aftereffects can appear later. If you are watching the patient, awaken him or her every hour for 24 hours. Report to the doctor immediately if you can't awaken or arouse the injured person. Report also any of the following:

  • Vomiting.
  • Inability to move arms and legs equally well on both sides.
  • Temperature above 100F (37.8C).
  • Stiff neck.
  • Pupils of unequal size or shape.
  • Convulsions.
  • Noticeable restlessness.
  • Severe headache that persists longer than 4 hours after injury.
  • Confusion.


Don't give any medicine-including non-prescription acetaminophen or aspirin-until the diagnosis is certain.

  • Wear protective headgear for contact sports and cycling.
  • Make sure that children have a safe area in which to play.
  • Supervise children of any age.
  • You should always uses a seat belt or child safety seat .
  • Be visible. DO NOT ride a bicycle at night.

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Disclaimer: website is designed for educational purposes only. It is not intended to treat, diagnose, cure, or prevent any disease. Always take the advice of professional health care for specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment. We will not be liable for any complications, or other medical accidents arising from the use of any information on this web site. Please note that medical information is constantly changing. Therefore some information may be out of date.