brain injuries occur when the head is struck by a foreign object. They are a form of contusion, in which surrounding blood vessels are damaged or destroyed. With both coup and contrecoup injuries, the force of a blow causes the brain to collide with the inside of the skull.
Causes of Coup and Contrecoup Brain Injuries
The difference between coup and contrecoup injuries involves the point of impact. Coup injuries occur on the side of the skull which is actually struck, while contrecoup injuries occur on the opposite side as a result of the brain jostling within the skull. An individual with a coup injury may also have a contrecoup injury, and vice versa.
These types of injuries are usually the result of a car accident, bodily assault, or some other form of extreme impact. They are sometimes seen in babies who have been violently shaken.
Coup and contrecoup injuries are extremely serious and usually result in permanent damage. Speech, memory, concentration, coordination, and decision-making may all be affected. In addition, there is a risk of paralysis, depending on the severity of the trauma.
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