Traumatic brain injury occurs when an external mechanical force causes brain dysfunction and usually results from a violent blow or jolt to the head or body. An object penetrating the skull, such as a bullet or shattered piece of skull, also can cause traumatic brain injury.
Emergency surgery may be needed to minimize additional damage to brain tissues. Surgery may be used to address these problems:
Removing clotted blood, also called a hematoma
Bleeding outside or within the brain can result in a collection of clotted blood that puts pressure on the brain and damages brain tissue.
Repairing skull fractures
Surgery may be needed to repair severe skull fractures or to remove pieces of skull in the brain.
Opening a window in the skull
Surgery may be used to relieve pressure inside the skull by draining accumulated cerebral spinal fluid or creating a window in the skull that provides more room for swollen tissues.
Not all treatments, tests and services are available at all Mayo Clinic Health System locations. Check with your preferred location in advance.