Skull Fractures and Critical Information that you Need to Know when You or Your Child is Injured
Fractures and broken bones result from a variety of different accidents. A fractured skull is potentially one of the most dangerous fractures sustained by children and adults. A fractured skull can result in infection and severe and debilitating brain injuries and will require immediate medical treatment. If you or a loved one has suffered a fractured skull or traumatic brain injury as a result of an accident or another person's negligence, the attorneys atThe Law Offices of Frank J. Dito, Jr., can help you.
Injuries to the head can cause damage to the skull or brain. The brain rests inside the skull protected by a cushion of soft tissue called the meninges. A skull fracture is a break in the bones surrounding the brain. Such injuries typically come from either blunt or penetrating trauma to the head.
Skull fractures are normally diagnosed by Computerized Tomography, more commonly known as a CT scan, of the head. X-rays are rarely helpful in identifying a skull fracture. Some of the obvious signs of a skull fracture including a depressed skull fracture, where a portion of the skull is broken or missing and portions of the brain may press inward and damage the brain.
Skull fractures can injure arteries and veins, which then bleed into the spaces around brain tissue. In people with a skull fracture, brain damage may be more severe than in people with a head injury but no fracture due to the severity of the trauma necessary to fracture a healthy skull. However, a skull fracture often occurs without brain damage and requires no treatment.
Fractured Skull Injury First Aid
In all cases of injury to the head and neck, it's vital not to move the victim's head and neck. Support his or her head in the position you found it. The spine may have been injured from the accident, possibly putting pressure on the spinal cord, causing temporary or permanent paralysis.
Call 911 immediately if you suspect a skull fracture. Symptoms may include pain, symptoms of brain damage, and, in certain types of skull fractures, clear fluid, known as cerebrospinal fluid, leaking from the nose or ears or bruises behind the ears or around the eyes. Blood may also drain from the ears or the nose.
Most people with skull fractures without an accompanying brain injury are admitted to the hospital and observed for a short time. Other than fractures of the base of the skull and depressed skull fractures, most skull fractures require no specialized treatment.
TYPES OF SKULL FRACTURES
Fractures at the Base of the Skull: People with a fracture of the base of the skull are usually admitted to the hospital. Such types of skull fractures cause the body to leak spinal fluid because of tears to the soft tissue surrounding the brain. Bed rest and head elevation are needed until the fluid stops leaking. Most meningeal tears seal up on their own but if spinal fluid continues to leak, then doctors can close the leak surgically.
Depressed Skull Fractures: In this type of fracture, one or more pieces of the fractured bone may press on the brain, damaging the brain or causing the brain to be exposed to the outside. In these types of fractures, doctors may operate and lift the skull pieces back into position and then stitch the wound closed.
Skull Fractures in Children: Skull fractures in infants present unique problems. Since an infant’s skull may be malleable, the membrane surrounding the brain can protrude through the fracture and can form a fluid-filled sac called a “growing fracture” or leptomeningeal cyst. The cyst develops over 3 to 6 weeks and may be the first notice that the infant’s skull was fractured.
A child with a fractured skull will be admitted to the hospital if:
• Their symptoms suggest a possible brain injury.
• The child was unconscious, even briefly.
• Symptoms or CT scan findings suggest a fracture at the base of the skull.
• The fracture occurs in an infant.
• Child abuse is suspected.
If you or a loved one has suffered a skull fracture, make sure that they receive appropriate medical care with an orthopedist or neurologist; maintain a record of their medical treatment; avoid speaking with any insurance adjusters before you speak to a personal injury attorney; and if you or a loved one has suffered a skull fracture, you need the advice of an experienced Staten Island, New York personal injury attorney. Call Frank J. Dito, Jr. today at (800) 310-5520 for your free consultation.