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To manage and prevent brain trauma

Brain injuries vary from mild to severe, but becoming familiar with the physical signs that first responders and medical professionals look for could be helpful. A witness to a head trauma accident might be able to provide vital information about an accident victim's condition. New Jersey residents may be able to help responders if they keep certain facts about brain injuries in mind.

Observations such as an injured person's capacity to speak or understand directions are important. Whether or not a person lost consciousness and for how long is another key piece of information to the severity of a head injury. Answering questions like how an injury occurred and what sort of force was behind the impact to the head are also significant.

Emergency personnel will assess a head injury and make sure the victim has an adequate oxygen and blood supply to the brain. The patient's vital signs are monitored, and every effort is made to keep the head and neck immobilized to transport the patient and avoid further injury.

At the hospital, doctors can order diagnostic tests such as CT or MRI scans. This provides them with clear views of the brain, and they can learn if the patient has any skull fractures or bleeding in the head. Sometimes tissue swelling must be monitored, but in traumatic brain injury cases, surgery may be inevitable.

While precautions such as seat belts and child restraints may limit the risk of a head injury, car accidents may still result in damage to a person's brain. Such injuries may limit a person's quality of life. However, in order to recover costs associated with the wreck, those individuals might pursue a lawsuit against the party who may have caused the accident.

Source: The Spectrum, "Follow tips to fight brain injuries", October 13, 2014

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