In this clip from my keynote speech at the Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation Association conference 2014, I discuss my mother’s first receiving notice about my fall and the events surrounding my diagnosis of a diffuse axonal injury (DAI). A DAI is known as one of the more common and most devastating types of traumatic brain injury, as damage occurs over a more widespread area than in focal brain injury. As you see in the video, online sources universally state that “over 90% of patients with severe DAI never regaining consciousness. Those who do wake up often remain significantly impaired.”
From Wikipedia: “DAI is the result of traumatic shearing forces that occur when the head is rapidly accelerated or decelerated, as may occur in auto accidents, falls, and assaults…The major cause of damage in DAI is the disruption of axons, the neural processes that allow one neuron to communicate with another…Two thirds of DAI lesions occur in areas where grey and white matter meet.”
“DAI is difficult to detect since it does not show up well on CT scans or with other macroscopic imaging techniques…DAI currently lacks a specific treatment beyond what is done for any type of head injury, including stabilizing the patient and trying to limit increases in intracranial pressure (ICP).”
You can learn more about my diagnosis and my mother’s experience in the hospital from my blog, including her interview post: A Sit-Down – With Mama Bear on VT Works.