Car crashes and slip-and-fall accidents are common causes of personal injuries in Maryland. Some injuries are minor, but some are life-threatening and require medical attention. One such life-threatening injury is an intracranial hematoma.
An intracranial hematoma is a dangerous medical condition where blood pools between the skull and the brain. A person can suffer this injury after a severe blow to the head, such as a personal injury caused by a car accident. But even if there hasn’t been a blow to the head, an intracranial hematoma is possible if a blood vessel in the brain bursts.
The accumulation of blood causes pressure inside the skull. The pressure can potentially cause numbness, weakness, headache and dizziness. Loss of consciousness and seizures are also a possibility.
Symptoms often appear immediately after the injury occurs. However, it can also take weeks or longer for symptoms to appear. Medical professionals call this the “lucid interval” because it’s a time of consciousness or normality following a head injury.
Types of intracranial hematomas
Not all intracranial hematomas are the same. For instance, epidural hematomas occur when blood pools between the outmost layer of the brain and the skull. The outermost layer of the brain is called the dura mater. And when blood pools between the dura mater and the brain tissue, those are called subdural hematomas.
Intraparenchymal hematomas occur when blood pools in the tissue of the brain. These hematomas can occur because of an injury to the head or a burst blood vessel. High blood pressure, tumors, and defects affecting the veins and arteries can also cause intraparenchymal hematomas.
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or a computed tomography (CT) scan is used to make an official diagnosis. Treatment often includes surgery, observation or medication. Recovery depends on the severity of the injury and the symptoms.