After taking a serious blow to the head, it is possible for a victim to suffer from brain damage or even damage to the skull. Skull fractures can hold potentially serious consequences, especially if left untreated or if treatment gets delayed.
Skull fractures can have a myriad of negative effects, with the impacts lasting both short-term and long-term, potentially for years. But how do the first signs of this dangerous problem emerge?
Loss of cerebrospinal fluid
Merck Manual discusses the red flags of skull fractures. First, skull fractures generally result in internal bleeding or the loss of cerebrospinal fluid. This fluid surrounds the brain within the skull and serves several purposes, like providing nutrients, cushioning the brain from shock, and removing chemicals and toxins to flush out of the system.
When the skull fractures, it may create a puncture into this area of fluid. Cerebrospinal fluid will often drain through the ears or nose, so noticing clear fluid leaking from any orifice of the face should result in immediate calls for medical aid.
Internal bleeding shows as bruising
Blood within the skull also tends to pool in hollow places. This includes around the eyes and behind the ears. Blood settling in these areas often looks like bruises, so take care not to dismiss internal bleeding as a sign of external damage.
Of course, skull fractures can also have neurological and behavioral impacts. Victims may experience paralysis, confusion, aggression or unconsciousness. Do not wait to get help when noticing such signs. Delayed treatment can result in oxygen or blood deprivation to the brain, which may lead to cell death and permanent brain damage.