What are the complications of a traumatic brain injury?

TBIs or traumatic brain injuries occur when you suffer a violent jolt or blow to your head or body. You may suffer blunt force trauma or TBIs can occur when an object enters your brain tissue, such as a bullet, glass or a piece of skull. TBIs may consist of bleeding, damage to the brain or bruised and torn tissues. 

Severe TBIs can result in serious complications, explains Mayo Clinic. 

Cognitive problems

After a TBI, you may experience a change to your cognitive abilities. You may have a hard time focusing or processing thoughts. Cognitive complications can affect your executive functioning, such as problem-solving, planning and decision-making. You may find it difficult to begin or complete a task. You may struggle to concentrate or to learn new things. 

Significant brain injuries can affect your short-term or long-term memory, your ability to reason and your judgment skills. Additionally, you may have more difficulty speaking, writing or understanding others. 

Physical problems

Physical complications after a TBI may linger for weeks to months or sometimes years. Seizures, for instance, following a TBI may only occur early on or may continue years following the accident. If you suffer from recurrent seizures, you may have post-traumatic epilepsy. 

Penetrating wounds or skull fractures may allow bacteria to penetrate the protective tissues around the brain. Infections can then spread to the rest of your nervous system. Other problems include fluid buildup in the brain, which may cause pressure and swelling. During the injury, you may have suffered blood vessel damage, which can lead to strokes or blood clots. Other complications include dizziness and frequent headaches.