Hypoxic and anoxic brain injuries occur when the brain doesn’t receive sufficient—or any—oxygen for some time. Because oxygen is crucial to brain function, these brain injuries can leave lasting damage.
These specific brain injuries have many different causes, including near-drowning, electric shock, carbon monoxide poisoning, improper administration of anesthesia, poisoning, smoke inhalation and drugs. These causes are common in personal injury cases, from premises liability and car accidents to medical malpractice. If you or a loved one have suffered an anoxic or hypoxic brain injury as a result of someone else’s negligence, contact the Law Offices of Tim Misny right away.
Here’s what to know about these brain injuries.
Hypoxic vs. anoxic brain injuries
Hypoxic and anoxic brain injuries are defined by whether the brain is receiving any oxygen at all. A complete interruption to the brain’s oxygen supply is an anoxic brain injury, while a partial interruption (inadequate to support normal brain function) is a hypoxic injury.
If the brain’s supply of oxygen is interrupted, people typically lose consciousness within 15 seconds. Brain damage starts to occur after four minutes without oxygen. Because the brain uses oxygen to make glucose, its major energy source, even a brief interruption can be devastating.
Consequences of hypoxic and anoxic brain injuries
When someone suffers a hypoxic or anoxic brain injury, they can experience a range of symptoms from mild or short-term effects to severe, long-term problems.
After a brain injury, the body will try to increase blood flow to the brain to restore the oxygen supply. The body can increase the blood flow to the brain by twice the normal level. If that’s not enough, brain function is affected. The nerve cells of the brain are particularly dependent on oxygen: a lack thereof especially affects the parts of the brain responsible for memory and movement control.
Mild hypoxic or anoxic brain injuries can result in problems with attention and concentration, physical coordination, short-term memory loss, dizziness, increased breathing rates, sweating and light-headedness. Some people experience issues with their vision, tingling or numbness.
Severe brain injuries can result in coma. Confusion, agitation and drowsiness are common. Cyanosis may occur, which is a blue tint to the skin, especially around the fingertips, lips and mouth. The patient may experience jerky limbs and seizures as well as brain swelling. Long-term effects include a persistent vegetative state.
Discuss your claim with an Ohio accident attorney today
The Law Offices of Tim Misny can help you with your accident claim. If you or a loved one suffered a brain injury due to someone else’s negligence or recklessness, I’ll Make Them Pay!® Call my office at (800) 556-4769 so that I can evaluate your case right away.