Coup, contrecoup, and coup-contrecoup are bruising, also called contusion, of the brain caused by a blow to the head. The terms refer to where the brain is bruised in relation to where the outside of the head was struck. Brain contusions can range from minor to severe, involving significant bleeding and swelling of the brain. Contrecoup injuries are often overlooked allowing the bleeding and swelling to progress.
What are Coup and Contrecoup Injuries?
Coup injuries are contusions of the brain at the site of the impact to the head. If there are external signs of the blow to the head, such as bruising, lacerations or a knot of the head, doctors will usually check for a coup injury and treat it promptly.
Contrecoup occurs on the opposite side of the brain, when the brain slams into the inside of the skull opposite of the outside impact point, due to the momentum created by the initial blow. These injuries are more dangerous because they are often overlooked and left untreated.
Coup-contrecoup is a combination of both injuries. There is a contusion on both sides of the brain. When this happens, doctors may discover the coup or contrecoup injury, but not both and only treat one area of the brain while the injury to the other side continues to progress.
If you have suffered traumatic brain injury in a car accident, slip and fall or another type of accident caused by someone else’s negligence or wrongdoing, the Los Angeles personal injury attorneys of Sheridan & Rund, PC can help. Please call us today at 888-640-6789 or contact us online right away.