Sunday, May 15, 2022

What Happens When Your Brain Swells

Don't Miss

What Are Common Symptoms Of A Concussion

Traumatic Brain Injury | What actually happens to your brain during an injury?

If you are recovering from a concussion, you might feel more sensitive to light, sound, movement, and others around you. Common symptoms include difficulty with headaches, memory, irritability, balance, visual processing, sleep, and hormonal changes. Even though others may not notice a difference, if you feel different, its important to realize that your experiences can likely be explained by your injury.

A lack of understanding by medical professionals and others around you is an unfortunately common situation that can make your injury feel invisible. To learn more about how this may affect you and find advice for you and your supporters, check out our page on invisible injury.

Hemicraniectomy Is Not Always The Answer

Although many physicians advocate for hemicraniectomy in cases of severe brain swelling, others feel that despite the proven benefits of this procedure in terms of survival, hemicraniectomy does not guarantee a meaningful restoration of quality of life for every stroke survivor.

There are other treatments for brain edema, although none are as definitive as hemicraniectomy. If your loved one has had a large stroke with severe edema, the decision about whether to proceed with hemicraniectomy to relieve the pressure is based on a number of factors, including how stable your loved one is, and whether their health is able to tolerate the risks of surgery.

Causes Of Brain Injury

Traumatic brain injury may result from any impact to the head which causes subsequent brain damage. A fall, whiplash or a blow to the head can lead to brain injury if the brain sees extreme back and forth movement where it hits itself against the walls of the cranium, or if the impact results in brain swelling or bleeding.

Tears in the nerves fibres, tumours and strokes can cause different brain injury types that can cause the symptoms mentioned above, and it is best to consult with a specialist brain injury doctor if any of the indications are noticed. Of note is the fact that both open and closed head injuries can result in severe brain damage, and because the brain injury is not visible is not enough cause to ignore the impact, and even mild traumatic brain injury may result in brain nerves swelling and causing damage to the nervous system.

Don’t Miss: Brain Haemorrhage Survival Rates

How Is Encephalitis Diagnosed

Doctors use several tests to diagnose encephalitis, including:

  • imaging tests, such as computed tomography scans or magnetic resonance imaging , to check the brain for swelling, bleeding, or other problems
  • electroencephalogram , which records the electrical signals in the brain, to check for unusual brain waves
  • blood tests to look for bacteria or viruses in the blood. These also can show if the body is making antibodies in response to a germ
  • lumbar puncture, or spinal tap, which checks cerebrospinal fluid for signs of infection

What Tests Are Used To Confirm Brain Stem Death

Why should athletes sit out longer while concussed ...

The tests used to determine brain stem death are carried out by two senior doctors at the childs bedside. One of these doctors will be from another team in the hospital so not involved in the childs care. This ensures independent checking of the results of these tests. They follow a nationally agreed protocol and are conclusive.

Before the tests are started, checks are made to make sure that any factors which might affect the tests such as medicines or an extremely low body temperature have been ruled out.

All the following criteria need to be met before brain stem death can be certified:

  • The childs pupils the small black parts in the centre of each eye do not respond to a direct light being shone in their eyes.

  • The childs natural eye movements are absent.

  • The child does not show any cough or gag reflex coughing or choking when the back of the throat is stimulated or the breathing tube is suctioned.

  • The child does not respond to pain when pressure is applied to certain areas of the body.

  • The childs eyes do not blink when the surface of eyeball is stroked with a piece of tissue or cotton wool.

  • The child does not breathe when taken off the ventilator.

The doctors will also look for any signs of breathing during the time off the ventilator, which can be between five and 10 minutes.

These tests are repeated and witnessed by each senior doctor to confirm that the brain stem has stopped working.

Recommended Reading: Jfk Autopsy Brain

Symptoms Due To Specific Types Of Encephalitis

Encephalitis caused by certain infections or autoimmune processes can show up with characteristic symptoms.

  • A sensation of déjà vu is a common finding in early stages of herpes simplex virus encephalitis.
  • A type of autoimmune encephalitis affecting NMDA receptors can start with a flu-like illness. It can then lead to behavioral changes and unusual movement patterns affecting the mouth and face, cognitive decline and impaired function of the autonomic nervous system.
  • Another type of autoimmune encephalitis is associated with seizures or other abnormal movement of the face or arm.

The symptoms of encephalitis may resemble other problems or medical conditions. Always consult your health care provider for a diagnosis.

Brain Swelling After Injury Offers An Unexpected Protection

Complete the form below and we will email you a PDF version of“Brain Swelling After Injury Offers an Unexpected Protection”

First Name*Would you like to receive further email communication from Technology Networks?Technology Networks Ltd. needs the contact information you provide to us to contact you about our products and services. You may unsubscribe from these communications at any time. For information on how to unsubscribe, as well as our privacy practices and commitment to protecting your privacy, check out our Privacy Policy

Also Check: How To Know Your Brain Is Bleeding

Stress Kills Brain Cells

In a study conducted by researchers from the Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science, researchers discovered that a single socially-stress event could kill new neurons in the brain’s hippocampus.

The hippocampus is one of the regions of the brain heavily associated with memory, emotion, and learning. It is also one of the two areas of the brain where neurogenesis, or the formation of new brain cells, occurs throughout life.

In experiments, the research team placed young rats in a cage with two older rats for a period of 20 minutes. The young rat was then subjected to aggression from the more mature residents of the cage. Later examination of the young rats found that they had cortisol levels up to six times higher than that of rats who had not experienced a stressful social encounter.

Further examination revealed that while the young rats placed under stress had generated the same number of new neurons as those who had not experienced the stress, there was a marked reduction in the number of nerve cells a week later.

While stress does not appear to influence the formation of new neurons, it does impact whether or not those cells survive.

So stress can kill brain cells, but is there anything that can be done to minimize the damaging impact of stress?

At The Moment Of Death

What Happens in Your Brain When You Fall in Love? | Staying Sharp

We often think of the moment of death as that time at which the heartbeat and breathing stop. We are learning, however, that death isn’t instantaneous. Our brains are now thought to continue to “work” for 10 minutes or so after we die, meaning that our brains may, in some way, be aware of our death.

In the hospital setting, there are a few criteria doctors use to declare death. These include the absence of a pulse, the absence of breathing, the absence of reflexes, and the absence of pupil contraction to bright light.

In an emergency setting, paramedics look for the five signs of irreversible death to determine when resuscitation, or revival, is not possible.

By definition, death is either when circulatory and respiratory functions stop irreversibly, or brain death, when the entire brain, including the brainstem, stop functioning. The determination must be made according to accepted medical standards

Read Also: Jfks Brain

Why Am I More Vulnerable To Re

It is critically important to protect your brain from another concussion during this energy shortage. Sustaining a follow-up concussion before your brain has fully healed can be disastrous. Research shows that, after a second concussion, your recovery takes longer and you may have a greater number and intensity of symptoms, as well as increased vulnerability. In rare cases, a second concussion too soon after the first can cause second impact syndrome which can lead to coma or death.

Its extremely important that athletes are immediately removed from the game after a possible concussion. Even a few minutes of continued play can increase the number of symptoms and recovery time.

Sleep Expert Matthew Walker Breaks Down The Many Effects Of Sleep Deprivation On Your Brain And Body

Following is a transcript of the video.

Matthew Walker: My name is Matthew Walker, I am a professor of neuroscience and psychology at the University of California, Berkeley, and I am the author of the book Why We Sleep.

We certainly know that a lack of sleep will actually prevent your brain from being able to initially make new memories, so its almost as though without sleep the memory inbox of the brain shuts down and you cant commit new experiences to memory. So those new incoming informational emails are just bounced, and you end up feeling as though youre amnesiac. You cant essentially make and create those new memories.

We also know that a lack of sleep will lead to an increased development of a toxic protein in the brain that is called beta-amyloid and that is associated with Alzheimers disease because it is during deep sleep at night when a sewage system within the brain actually kicks in to high gear and it starts to wash away this toxic protein, beta-amyloid. So if youre not getting enough sleep every night, more of that Alzheimers-related protein will build up. The more protein that builds up, the greater your risk of going on to develop dementia in later life.

There is a global experiment that is performed on 1.6 billion people twice a year, and its called daylight saving time. And we know that in the spring, when we lose one hour of sleep, we see a subsequent 24% increase in heart attacks the following day.

Recommended Reading: Which Of The Following Statements About Brain Development And Early Childhood Is True

Where Can I Learn More

One resource thats helped us better understand concussions and how to care for this injury is the book Shaken Brain: The Science, Care, and Treatment of Concussion 1st Edition, by Elizabeth Sandel, MD. We recommend her book as a place to find some of the most up to date knowledge on concussions.

What Happens to Your Brain: a Deeper Dive

Still curious? Seeking a more detailed explanation? This deeper dive page is for you. Our deeper dive page expands on the ideas introduced above.

What Happens When Your Brain Is Injured

How is Brain Swelling Treated?

There are several kinds of brain injury, including blows to the head, bleeding, and direct damage to the brain itelf, such as from a gunshot wound.

In the case of a blow to the head , the force of the blow causes the brain to be forced against the side of the immobile skull and to swell. In addition, there may be bleeding into or around the brain. The brain swells when it is injured, just like any other part of your body swells. For example, when an ankle is injured by a sprain it becomes swollen. The difference between a swollen ankle and a swollen brain that your brain is encased in the unyielding bony skull, where there is very little room to accommodate the swelling. Once the limited extra room in your skull is used up, the brain tissue starts to push down through the opening at the bottom of the skull where the spinal cord continues down the vertebral column.

In the case of an aneurysm or stroke, a blood vessel in your head bursts or a clot stops the flow of blood and oxygen to the brain tissue. Lack of blood causes injury to the brain cells, and once again, the injured brain itself begins to swell and more brain injury occurs because the skull cannot accommodate the extra fluid.

Finally, if there is a gunshot wound , the brain is directly damaged by the bullet’s tearing through the brain tissue, possibly ricocheting within the skull and causing bleeding, swelling, and further damage that way.

Recommended Reading: Why Are My Brain Freezes So Bad

What Happens When A Brain Bleeds

I’ve been hearing about bleeding in the brain after a TBI. Can you explain how this happens and why it’s so dangerous? What exactly is a subdural hematoma?

Let’s start with the basics. A hematoma is a tumor-like collection of blood, usually clotted, located outside a blood vessel. The subdural space is located between the dura mater and the arachnoid membrane . The epidural space is located on or outside the dura mater.

Now, to answer your question, a subdural hematoma is basically bleeding into the space between the brain cover and the brain itself. More specifically, there are blood vessels running through the brain and in the spaces between the outside of the brain and the inside of the skull. During a brain injury, any of these vessels can tear and bleed. Ruptured vessels running in the subdural space typically veins cause subdural hematomas. Ruptured vessels running through the epidural space typically arteries cause epidural hematomas. Both types of bleeding take up space in the skull and in so doing squeeze down on the brain. Because arteries are under pressure, epidural hematomas leak quickly and compress the brain rapidly while subdural hematomas leak much more slowly.

Getting to the hospital quickly is the best way to diagnose and treat this bleeding, which usually requires surgery to remove the blood and relieve the pressure on the brain.

Is There A Silver Lining At The Moment Of Death

While this is the first documented case of human brain activity during death, scientists have recorded similar gamma brain wave fluctuations in the brains of dying rats. This suggests, according to the research team, that this life replay phenomenon may be a built-in biological response to death conserved across species.

These findings are astounding, but ultimately limited in scope. After all, only one individuals brain was recorded, and that patient had been dealing with a serious condition, seizures, and swelling. Study authors say all of those factors may have influenced the recorded brain activity. Moving forward, the team plans on researching this topic further. For now, though, they see this work as a source of hope.

As a neurosurgeon, I deal with loss at times. It is indescribably difficult to deliver the news of death to distraught family members, Dr. Zemmar concludes. Something we may learn from this research is: although our loved ones have their eyes closed and are ready to leave us to rest, their brains may be replaying some of the nicest moments they experienced in their lives.

The study is published in Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience.

Also Check: How To Know If You Have Brain Bleeding

Closed Versus Open Head Injury

Closed means the skull and brain contents have not been penetrated , whereas open means the skull and other protective layers are penetrated and exposed to air. A common example of an open head injury is a gunshot wound to the head. A common closed head injury is one that occurs as the result of a motor vehicle crash.

In a closed head injury, damage occurs because of a blow to the person’s head or having the head stop suddenly after moving at high speed. This causes the brain to move forward and back or from side to side, such that it collides with the bony skull around it. This jarring movement bruises brain tissue. When brain injury occurs at high speed, the brain rotates inside the skull. This type of rotational movement damages axons , and blood vessels by stetching and tearing them. After a closed head injury, damage can occur in specific brain areas or throughout the brain .

Damage following open head injury tends to be localized and therefore damage tends to be limited to a specific area of the brain. However, such injuries can be as severe as closed head injuries, depending on the destructive path of the bullet or other invasive object within the brain.

How Is Cerebral Edema Diagnosed

Encephalitis (Brain Inflammation?) Signs and Symptoms (& Why They Occur)

If a patient comes in with a TBI, stroke, or acute brain injury, theres almost always brain swelling, says Balu. Theyll be immediately admitted to the ICU, and then we perform a neurological and physical exam. According to Balu, the clinical neurological exam tests brain function and level of consciousness to see if theres brain damage. Any slight change in level of consciousness may indicate brain damage.

Signs we look out for include increases in intracranial pressure in the head, sleepiness, responsiveness, and problems with vision, Balu says.

When a person is admitted to the hospital with a brain injury, sometimes neurologists will place a device directly into the brain itself to monitor intracranial pressure, Balu says.

Next, well do a scan to see whats causing the swelling and neurological symptoms and where its located, he says. Well either perform a CT scan or an MRI, but often we do MRIs, because they tell us more about the brain swelling and give us a picture of the type of neurological problem, whether its a stroke, bleeding, or tumor.

Read Also: Why Does A Brain Freeze Happen

More articles

Popular Articles