Brain Injury Myth Debunked Again
It is a common myth of traumatic brain injury that you need to strike your head in order to suffer a brain injury.
For example, read my previous post, Traumatic Brain Injury Claims: Myth #2 You Have to Hit Your head to Suffer a Brain Injury
It is now commonly accepted (by everyone except insurance companies) that acceleration/deceleration trauma, like the forces scene in a severe whiplash case, can cause brain injury.
Blast Waves Can Cause Brain Injury
Researchers at the University of Rochester have discovered that non-lethal blast waves can create enough pressure on the skull to create damaging blows to the brain, even without a direct head impact.
Most Brain Injury Due to Trauma
Most traumatic brain injury results from direct physical trauma to the head/brain and can cause severe and permanently disabling injuries.
Blast Waves Similar to Physical Trauma
Recent research performed on behalf of the American military shows that concussive blast waves can cause damage similar to physical trauma. Researchers used three dimensional simulations to prove that blast waves cause the skull to flex which produce mechanical forces on the brain similar to those in physical impacts from automobile accidents. One of the researchers, Eric Blackman said that the research was important because:
“By comparing the effects of blasts on the head with the effect of head impacts we will be able to make some sense of the distinct mechanisms of injury, the damage a solder might incur and how a helmet might be designed to minimize both.”
This research isn't just important to members of the military. It is relevant to anyone in the construction industry whose work involves blasting. It may assist in workers compensation claims for persons who suffer a brain injury as a result of being exposed to shock waves from concussive blasting.