Anoxic and Hypoxic Brain Injuries

By Lynn Harris on June 21, 2019

The human brainInjuries to the brain can have lasting and tragic consequences. That’s why Salt Lake City, UT accident attorney Lynn C. Harris takes traumatic brain injury (TBI) cases so seriously. The long-term effects of any sort of brain damage can lead to so many challenges.

While many people think of brain injuries in terms of blows to the head, there are other kinds of brain injuries that can affect the health of the brain. With this in mind, we would like to consider some o the basics of anoxic and hypoxic brain injuries below.

About Anoxic and Hypoxic Brain Injuries

Anoxic and hypoxic brain injuries both involve the death and impairment of brain cells due to a lack of oxygen. The difference between anoxic and hypoxic brain injuries is based on the nature of the oxygen deprivation.

  • Anoxic Brain Injuries - Anoxic brain injuries involve the total lack of oxygen to the brain, causing the death of brain cells. Typically, the death of brain cells occurs four minutes after oxygen flow has been completely deprived.
  • Hypoxic Brain Injuries - Hypoxic brain injuries involve a restricted flow of oxygen to the brain rather than total lack of oxygen to the brain. The restricted flow of oxygen to the brain leads to a gradual death of brain cells.

Causes of Anoxic and Hypoxic Brain Injuries

Common causes of anoxic and hypoxic brain injuries include:

  • Stroke
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Cardiac arrest
  • Drowning
  • Choking
  • Strangulation
  • TBI

In addition to the causes above, total oxygen deprivation and restricted oxygen flow can also be caused by:

  • Smoke inhalation
  • Carbon monoxide inhalation
  • Problems during childbirth
  • Anesthetic complications during surgery
  • Hypotension (low blood pressure)

Symptoms of Anoxic and Hypoxic Brain Injuries

Oxygen deprivation will usually result in the loss of consciousness and the person potentially falling into a comatose state. The long-term effects and symptoms of these kind of brain injuries can vary. We’ve spoken with clients at our Salt Lake City law firm about their lives after anoxic and hypoxic brain injury, and have heard them complain of the following:

  • Headaches
  • Problems with coordination
  • Blurry vision
  • Speech problems
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Seizures
  • Mood and personality changes
  • Lapses in memory
  • Problems concentrating
  • Confusion and disorientation

The Effect of Anoxic and Hypoxic Brain Injuries

The long-term effects of brain injures related to oxygen deprivation can be severe. The death of brain cells can result in permanent changes in the way you speak, think, move, and process the world around you. The effects of these injuries could force you to change careers, or may necessitate assistive care for years to come.

If these kinds of injuries affect a newborn baby, they will face an uphill battle when it comes to growth and development. A child is still able to lead a fulfilling life following an anoxic or hypoxic brain injury, but extra time and care will be needed to nurture and assist that child during their formative years.

Did Someone Cause Your Brain Injury?

If your brain injury was the result of another person’s reckless or negligent actions, it’s important that this individual or party be held accountable. By seeking damages from that party, you can seek to cover your current and future medical expenses and other losses you’ve experienced as a direct result of your brain injury.

Learn More About Brain Injury Litigation

To learn more about your legal options after you or a loved one suffered a brain injury, be sure to contact a skilled injury accident lawyer. Lynn C. Harris can be reached by phone in Salt Lake City at (801) 521-3200.

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