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What is the difference between an acquired brain injury and a traumatic brain injury?

What is the difference between an acquired brain injury and a traumatic brain injury?

The definitions of these terms as adopted by the Brain Injury Association are below.

Traumatic Brain Injury
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is defined as an alteration in brain function, or other evidence of brain pathology, caused by an external force.

Examples of a TBI include:

  • falls
  • assaults
  • motor vehicle accidents
  • sports injuries

Acquired Brain Injury
An acquired brain injury is an injury to the brain, which is not hereditary, congenital, degenerative, or induced by birth trauma. An acquired brain injury is an injury to the brain that has occurred after birth.

Examples of ABI include:

  • stroke
  • near drowning
  • aneurysm
  • tumor
  • infectious disease that affects the brain (i.e., meningitis)
  • lack of oxygen supply to the brain (i.e., heart attack)

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