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Types of Skull Fractures

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Our skull is a very important part of our body which protectively encloses our brain. The skull is made up of eight cranial bones. As a result, a skull fracture may occur when any of these bones break. Although our skull is very strong and resilient, a heavy blow or a contact with a sharp object can lead to a fracture and in some cases injury to brain. A fall, accident through a motor vehicle or any sports activity can also cause a fracture of the cranial bones. But most of the time it is quite difficult to identify the break of the skull bones. Some of the common symptoms that can help you identify the severe head injury are:-

  • A bruise forming behind ears and around eyes
  • Swelling and pain at and around the point of contact
  • Problem with concentrating on something for even short time period with unclear and blurred vision
  • Bleeding or oozing of a clear liquid out of nose or either of the eyes
  • Problem with arm or leg movement
  • Trouble in moving your shoulder
  • Hearing problem along with a continuous whistle sound in your ears
  • Apart from above mention problems you may also suffer from dizziness, headache, vomiting, jaw pain and upset stomach.

Depending upon the type of blow and the area of contact on the skull, the type of injury may differ. If the object is quite sharp, the injury is more likely to be deeper in nature. However, if the object in contact is flat, there are more chances of surface injury. Keeping all these circumstances in mind there are generally four types of skull fractures:

Linear Skull Fracture: This type of the fracture is most common and is often prevalent in two-third of the head injury cases. A minor head injury such as falling or being hit by rock or a stick may lead to a linear fracture. It is usually a hair line break in the cranial bone without any indication of indenture.

Depressed Skull Fracture: This type of fracture may lead to a depression or a cavity in the skull. An impact with small blunt object such as a hammer or a rock can be the cause of this kind of breakage. Based on the degree of the damage, this type of fracture is classified as open or close which can be treated surgically or non-surgically depending on the injury condition.

Diastatic Skull Fracture: This type of fracture occurs when the fracture in the skull leads to the widening of its suture. This type is mostly seen in infants or young children where the sutures are still under the development process. Depending on the degree of injury, the result can be paralysis, coma, dementia, seizures or even death.

Basilar Skull Fracture: This type of fracture occurs when the bone at the base of the skull is broken. Its most common symptom is bleeding around the eyes or ears or sometimes both. A patient in this case is more prone to infection due to the extended fracture line up to the sinus. This case is quite rare as it happens when great amount of force is applied on the skull.

Penetrating Skull Fracture: Quite clear from the name, this type occurs when an object pierces into the skull. It is mainly caused due the penetration of bullet in the skull or stab wounds injuring the brain tissues as well.

Compound Skull Fracture: This type is the most fatal of all the skull fractures. In this type of fracture all the protecting layers of the brain break and allow the cranial cavity to be in contact with the outside environment. Immediate treatment is a must in this case and it comes with the maximum chances of contamination.

Here at Jehangir Hospital we provide you with several ways to diagnose the skull fracture. Through various imaging tests such as X-rays, MRI and CT scans and other neuro-diagnostic facilities, our expert team of doctors in the neurology department provide you with the best treatment. We make sure that we are there to help you 24X7 for all neurology in Pune related injuries as well as the emergency neuro cases.

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