THE CAUSES OF CEREBRAL DAMAGE CEREBRAL INJURIES and ITS CAUSES
When we speak of acquired cerebral damage (ACD) we refer to a cerebral injury that suddenly interrupts in the life of the person affected. The clearest example is the grave secondary cranium-concussion traumatism that can come from a traffic accident. Other important causes of cerebral damage that can cause a loss of self-reliance are ictus, cerebral tumors and infections.
The wide degree of severity and the possible consequences cover a wide scope of damage which ranges from total recovery to a total vegetable state. Some of the consequences can have a big affect on the self-reliance of the patient and modify the way of life of the immediate family. On the Menni network work is carried out on this group with the aim of helping them to recover autonomy and quality of life.
THE MOST COMMON CAUSES.
Cranium-concussion traumatism (CT) is a blow to the skull with sufficient intensity to alter the level of conscience or to cause a skull fracture. Most people who suffer this CT are Young people who have had traffic accidents or work accidents. Another source of CTs are the result of falls (especially children or old people), aggressions and blows resulting from sports or high-risk activities.
Ictus: strokes and cerebral hemorrhage
Ictus, or accidents cerebral-vascular accidents (CVA), are provoked by problems of cerebral blood flow ictus can occur because of obstruction in the artery which, in that case, is called thrombosis. Another cause is a rupture of the artery, which is called a hemorrhage. The term burst blood vessel is used to define this type of ictus. The extension of the cerebral area affected, the localization of the injury, and the age of the patient are the three factors which decide on the clinical diagnosis which will result over the following days or weeks after the occurrence of the ictus. Thus, we might have a patient on our hands who is in a total vegetable state or we might, at the other extreme, have a patient who fully recovers within days or weeks of the occurrence.
This particular health problem is currently being given special attention by the Ministry of Health under the title –Strategy with Ictus within the National Health System. The Ministry, along with the Regional Communities, scientific societies, affected groups and other interest groups are all combining forces in order to attain a better approach to this illness.
- Anoxia cerebral
It is a lack of oxygen in the brain and this may be caused by a heart stoppage, asphyxiation, an intoxication of carbon monoxide, a choking or some other deficiency of the respiratory system. The prenatal anoxia or prenatal occurrences are also frequent of cerebral injuries.
As in the case of traumatisms, survival from these cerebral tumors is increasing. This gives rise to an increase in the number of people who survive this serious illness but who now need to face up to long-term rehabilitation processes.
The most frequent cause of this illness is an infection from herpes virus. This type of infection affects the temporal and frontal lobes in most cases. Loss of memory and of language, as well as changes in emotions and behavior are common in the most serious cases.
Cerebral damage can have an effect on all the functional areas of the human body. For that reason, the consequences of a cerebral injury can be very varied and complex ones.
- 1. Physical consequences
The most frequent are those of balance; alterations and inability to remain standing up, alterations or incapacity to walk, limitations or alterations in the limbs, or even control of the trunk and head when in a resting posture. Other alterations can be a lack of feeling and movement in some part of the body, and even a partial or total loss of feeling in some parts of the body, such as sight.
- 2. Cognitive consequences
Modification in the capacity for thinking, taking decisions and mental control. For this reason there are often difficulties in the learning process, comprehension, memory or the thought processes.
- 3. Communication consequences
Even if there is no apparent physical problem, (a lack of mobility in the tongue) there can exist difficulties in trying to express oneself or in oral comprehension.
- 4. Behavioral and emotional consequences
The behavioral consequences may arise from a lack of inhibition. The person might do and say the first thing that occurs to them in that moment or perhaps the opposite could happen and the person never says anything except if he is asked to. At the emotional level the alterations could be seen in a greater irritation, sensibility, impatience and especially in high and low emotional transformations.
Within the family environment.
The family is also affected. The changes that this new situation brings about and its unexpected arrival produces a de-structuralization in the family milieu.
DATA ON CDA CASES
In Spain, CDA has become one of the most important ways for causing human incapacities, causing a high level of dependence for many people who suffer this problem.
Every 4 minutes hospital admittance is made due to CDA.
There are around 144.692 CDA cases each year.
It is estimated that there exist some 300.000 people affected by CDA in a chronic state.
Cerebral vascular cases are the third highest cause of death within the Spanish population and the leading cause of death in woman.
More than 70 % of crania-encephalic traumatisms have their origin in traffic accidents with a significant number of these being young people
More than 3.000 people from Navarra are currently suffering some type of chronic form of CDA.