MCV/Q, Medical College of Virginia Quarterly

MCV/Q, Medical College of Virginia Quarterly

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MCV/Q, Medical College of Virginia Quarterly





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Head injuries of sufficient severity to bring the patient to a hospital occur in more than one per hundred of the population every year. The toll in death and disability is staggering: the majority of patients are young wage-earners with families so that the total socio-economic burden can hardly be guessed at. Much emphasis is laid on the concept that physical disruption of neurons in the brain is not a reversible process and that regeneration within the nervous system to the point of functional recovery does not occur; however, this rather dismal view of head injury is at variance with the facts. Most cases of head injury reaching the hospital are associated with relatively minor degrees of primary brain damage from which full functional recovery may be expected even though there are minor residual neurological signs. The major problem for the physician treating head injuries in hospitals is that secondary complications may supervene and change a relatively minor head injury case into a major disability problem or even a fatality. For the management of head injury considerable emphasis should be laid on the prevention of secondary complications; such an approach is outlined in this article.


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