Everything You Need to Know About Anoxic Brain Injury

Inside the Dangerous World of Anoxic Brain Injury

You read about traumatic brain injury in the news very often, but what you might not know is that there is another type of brain injury that’s just as dangerous: anoxic brain injury.

This lesser known type of brain injury is nothing to take lightly, and can have potentially fatal consequences.

Anoxic brain injury can lead to serious brain damage and long-term consequences. Depending on the severity of your condition, you could be looking at a long recovery process.

However, it’s important to understand that you aren’t alone in this process. With the right education, you can take control of your life and heal as much as possible.

Get to know all about anoxic brain injury, because accidents can strike at any time, and you can never be too prepared for them.


Patient undergoing treatment for anoxic brain injury.

The Difference Between Anoxic Brain Injury and Traumatic Brain Injury

There are many different types of brain injury, and many of these types fall into the traumatic brain injury category. However, anoxic brain injury is different than traumatic brain injury.

A traumatic brain injury is usually caused by a blow to the head. This usually causes the brain to jolt rapidly, hitting against the insides of your skull and impacting your brain’s function.

Traumatic brain injuries could be a mild brain injury, such as a concussion, or a severe traumatic brain injury resulting in brain damage.

Meanwhile, anoxic brain injury is damage that is caused by a lack of oxygen to the brain for a long period of time (a few minutes or more). It’s sometimes called hypoxic brain injury, because the term hypoxia refers to the lack of oxygen.

When the brain is deprived of oxygen for too long, brain cells begin to die. This process is called apoptosis.

While our brain cells naturally die as we age, this process is natural and usually carried out over someone’s lifetime. If too many cells die at once, it could lead to brain damage and reduced brain function. In some cases, it could also be fatal.


What causes anoxic brain injury?

What Causes Anoxic Brain Injury?

There are many different causes of anoxic brain injury. Essentially, it could happen anytime there is lack of oxygen to the brain.

Here are a few of the most common causes:

  • Assault (such as being choked out)
  • A sudden blow to your windpipe
  • Stroke
  • Choking
  • Suffocation
  • Anaphylactic shock from an allergic reaction
  • Drowning
  • Carbon monoxide from faulty gas appliances

You could suffer anoxic brain injury from a car accident. For example, if you become stuck underneath something that cuts off oxygen flow to your body and you are unable to breathe for a long period of time, you could suffer an anoxic brain injury.

Additionally, medical malpractice can sometimes lead to anoxic brain injury. Complications from surgery, birth, and anesthesia could contribute, as well as any other error that could cause respiratory or cardiac arrest.

Even just a slip and fall could lead to an anoxic brain injury if you land in a way that chokes or suffocates you.


Woman suffering a headache. This is one of the signs of an anoxic brain injury.

What to Look For: Signs and Symptoms

There are many different signs of a brain injury, and they all depend on the individual circumstances and type of injury.

However, there are some common signs of anoxic brain injury that will help you determine if you or your loved one are suffering.

Here’s what you should be on the lookout for:

  • Concussion
  • Depression or anxiety
  • Tingling or numbness in the limbs
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Headache or migraine
  • New personality features, such as a new fear or changes to your behavior
  • Memory loss


Patient discussing treatment for anoxic brain injury with his doctor.

Anoxic Brain Injury Recovery: Does it go Away?

With the right medical attention and healing process, you can recover from anoxic brain injury.

On average, patients recovering from anoxic brain injury take longer to heal than those with a traumatic brain injury. This is because the lack of oxygen causes a severe type of brain damage that’s more than just a bruise or internal injury.

Most physicians will examine the cause of your injury and focus on preventing it from happening again.

Counselling might also be recommended to you if you’re suffering from mental health issues or behavioural symptoms. Occupational and physical therapy will be recommended to help you restore physical functions, such as eating and speaking.

Most of your recovery process will focus on rewriting the parts of your brain that have been damaged with your injury. Once you restore function to those areas, you will gain back the mobility and function your body had before.

As you move forward with your life, a professional will also consult you on nutrition and exercise that can help support your recovery.


Female suffering a head injury after a car accident.

Can I Sue For My Anoxic Brain Injury?

If your injury was caused by someone else’s negligence, you could be eligible to make a brain injury settlement claim. You’ll be able to sue for your pain and suffering, as well as lost wages from being unable to work due to your injury.

For example, if your anoxic brain injury happened because you choked on a faulty product, you could file a product liability claim.

Keep every record you get throughout your process, such as medical documents and papers. It also helps if you have photographs you took at the scene of the accident.

You’ll have to prove that your brain injury was directly caused by the other person’s actions. These medical records and other pieces of evidence will be your biggest asset in doing so.


Scales of justice statue standing on a lawyer's desk. Brain injury settlement claim in Ontario. Contact Conte and Associates, personal injury lawyers, located in Whitby and Vaughan.

Conte Jaswal Will Help Get You The Brain Injury Settlement You Deserve

It’s not fair that someone else’s negligence made you suffer a brain injury.

At Conte Jaswal, we empathise with your situation and we’ve worked with many people who have suffered. That’s what drives our passion to fight for you. We’ll get you the compensation you deserve to take control of your life and move on with your recovery.

We work with the top medical experts in Ontario to build the strongest case. You won’t have to go up against the insurance companies on your own- we’re your advocate, and we’re here to help you as much as we can.

Contact Conte Jaswal now to book your consultation at one of our offices in Whitby and Vaughan. It’s time to get your life back on track.

Contact your Toronto personal injury lawyers for a consultation.

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