Actress Natasha Richardson died today from a brain injury she suffered during a ski vacation at a resort in Canada. It was reported that Ms. Richardson was taking a beginner’s lesson when she fell on a flat portion of a run near the bottom of the mountain. Notably, she was not wearing a helmet.
Right after the fall Ms. Richardson was talking and joking, but shortly she complained of head pain and was taken to a local hospital for observation. “A patient can appear so deceivingly normal at first,” said Graffagnino, director of Duke University Medical Center’s Neurosciences Critical Care Unit. “But they actually have a brain bleed and as the pressure builds up, they’ll experience classic symptoms of a traumatic brain injury.” For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.
Such injuries are known as epidural hemorrhage. Blood gets trapped between the skull and the hard layer of skin between the bone and brain, known as the dura mater. As the blood flows from the ruptured artery, the fluid builds and punctures the dura. For comparison, physicians often describe the human brain as an orange. The brain is the meat of the orange, the peel is the skull, and the spidery layer around the meat is the dura mater. (“Dura mater” is Latin for tough mother.)
Physicians working on trauma teams are taught “if a group of people are in a car crash and someone dies, the team should assume everyone else has serious injuries — even if they look good, and say they feel totally fine,” Graffagnino said. This is a fundamental lesson for all of us who experience some kind of head trauma — don’t assume you are okay simply because you feel no immediate obvious effects from the trauma. Seek prompt medical attention.
The untimely death of Ms. Richardson, who was not engaging in any obviously risky behavior at the time she fell, should be an object lesson for us all. Even the most common activities can prove hazardous when proper safety precautions (like wearing a helmet) are not followed.
For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.