Head injuries are a common cause of death and disability for children. They are often the result of motor vehicle accidents in which the child is a passenger or is hit as a pedestrian. Serious falls, sports injuries and physical abuse are other leading causes of head injuries in children.
A head injury is the general term to describe injuries to the scalp, skull or brain as well as the underlying tissue and blood vessels in a child’s head. Injuries can range from mild bumps and scalp lacerations to fractured skull bones, internal bleeding and brain damage. Skull fractures are serious injuries caused by trauma to the head. They may accompany a traumatic brain injury (TBI), an injury suffered when a blow to the head causes the brain to collide with the inside of the skull. There are four types of skull fractures:
- Linear skull fractures consist of a break in the skull bone, but the bone does not move. These fractures generally do not require any medical intervention and children can often resume normal activities in a few days.
- Depressed skull fractures are those where part of the skull is actually sunken in due to the injury. Broken skull fragments may penetrate or constrict brain tissue and can cause severe brain damage. Surgery is generally required in order to correct the problem.
- Diastatic skull fractures occur in the sutures—the areas between the bones in the skull that fuse as the child grows. These fractures generally occur in infants and widen the normal suture lines.
- Basilar skull fractures are the most serious type of skull fracture. They involve a break in the bone at the base of the skull that tears the membrane covering the brain. Children with this type of fracture often have bruises around the eyes or behind the ears. Sometimes clear fluid drains from the nose or ears.
A skull fracture is a serious injury often caused by trauma sustained in a motor vehicle accident, sports accident, fall or violent episode. Some skull fractures, if left untreated, can cause brain damage or death. Worse yet, because they are the result of a blow to the head, they are often accompanied by a brain injury. If your child has suffered a head injury due to the negligence or carelessness of another, you need help. Contact Austin child injury attorney David Todd at 512-472-7799 for a free consultation.