A break in the structure of one or more of the bones that make up the head and face.
There are two major types of skull fractures:
Open skull fracture – An injury to the skull or face where part of the scalp is torn or broken. In general, an open fracture is characterized by exposed bone sticking out through the skin.
Closed skull fracture – An injury to the skull or face where the scalp may be damaged but remains intact.
A skull fracture is caused by injury, where some sort of trauma was exerted on the skull or face. Such trauma is usually from a direct blow to the area, such as that incurred during certain sport physical activities and falls. Often, skull fractures result from motorcycle accidents, where an individual receives direct trauma to the head if involved in a crash. Motorcycle crashes, along with other types of crashes where an individual’s body is exposed (such as a bicycle accident) can prove deadly if an individual receives a skull fracture that affects the spinal cord or results in a brain injury.
Symptoms of a skull fracture can change depending on the area that is injured. Injury may be caused to the brain, resulting in dizziness, leaking fluid, blood loss and paralysis of the limbs. Injury may also extend to the facial skull area, which may cause cosmetic and sensory damages.
Since skull fractures (and mostly all head injuries) can be subject to severe and deadly damages, the injured person will most likely be taken to the hospital for scans and tests. Depending on the type of injury, a person may undergo surgery to relieve pressure on the brain or fix broken bones in the face or skull. Surgery may take place right away or after swelling subsides, again depending on the injury.
Medical Terms | Rue, Ziffra & Caldwell