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Types of traumatic brain injuries caused by car accidents

On Behalf of | Apr 7, 2024 | Motor Vehicle Accidents |

Car accidents can lead to many different types of harm, among them traumatic brain injuries (TBIs). Unlike most injuries, TBIs are a major cause for concern due to their potential to result in long-term cognitive, physical and emotional impairment.

Since traumatic brain injuries are a result of sudden and violent forces acting upon the head, they can manifest in various forms depending on the nature and severity of the impact caused by a crash. The following are among the most common.

Penetrating injury

During a car accident, there is always the risk of objects within the vehicle becoming projectiles such as shattered glass, loose items or even parts of the vehicle itself. In the event of a high-speed collision or rollover, these objects can penetrate the skull and directly injure the brain tissue. Penetrating injuries are particularly severe and can cause significant damage to specific areas of the brain leading to cognitive, motor and sensory deficits.

Diffuse axonal injury

Diffuse axonal injury occurs when the brain rapidly shifts inside the skull due to the sudden acceleration or deceleration forces experienced during a car accident. This rapid movement can cause the brain’s nerve fibers known as axons to stretch and tear leading to widespread damage throughout the brain. Diffuse axonal injury often results in widespread cognitive impairment including problems with attention, memory and executive function as well as physical and sensory deficits.


When the head experiences a sudden impact or rapid change in direction during a car accident, it can result in concussions. Concussions are a type of mild traumatic brain injury (TBI) caused by the brain bouncing or twisting within the skull. This can lead to temporary disruption of normal brain function often resulting in symptoms such as headache, dizziness, confusion and memory problems.

These are just a few examples of traumatic brain injuries that can occur as a result of car accidents. If you have been injured in a car accident, it’s crucial to seek medical attention promptly and consult with a qualified attorney to understand your rights and options for pursuing compensation for your injuries and related damages from at-fault parties.