The nature and extent of the cognitive impairment following TBI can range widely, depending on the severity and positioning of the injury. If a focal brain injury transpires, the outcome could be comparable to an injury provoked by a CVA (Cerebrovascular accident or stroke), such as
- unilateral neglect
- visuospatial dysfunction.
Nevertheless, these are the usual findings following TBI. Due to the mechanisms of acceleration-deceleration that oftentimes degrades the ventral and lateral areas of the frontal and temporal lobes, the most commonly encountered sequelae are attention and memory deficiency, difficulty in adhering new data, solving problems, planning, but also problems linked to impulsivity and self-control.
Some “subclinical” findings such as a change in naming, verbal fluency, and auditory perception are also reported. In the initial stages, attention deficits are the most frequent and severe in the residual stage, usually concerning difficulty in sustaining divided attention. The long-term memory is usually regained, but some patients maintain difficulties in learning new information and in remembering it.
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