The Neonatal Intensive Care Units (NICUs) at Riley Hospital for Children and IU Health Methodist Hospital are putting visitor restrictions in place starting Monday, Nov. 18th. Only visits by parents plus four designated adults identified by the parents will be allowed on the NICU floor.
Siblings and children under 18 will not be permitted. These restrictions minimize risk of infection to patients already at risk and will be in place through spring 2020.
Childhood injuries to the head and spine can potentially be serious. Immediate treatment in the emergency room offers the best chance at preventing long-term damage to the brain or spine. The symptoms of head and spine injuries vary depending on the specific type of injury.
Common symptoms of head injuries include:
Common symptoms of spine injuries include:
There are many types of head injuries. These injuries can occur alone or in combination:
Scalp injuries. The most frequent injuries to the scalp are abrasions, scrapes and lacerations. There are many blood vessels in the scalp, so even minor cuts bleed a lot, which can make these injuries frightening. Damage to the scalp can be more serious if the skull is exposed or if there are large tears, which may require stitches or surgical exploration. If your child's scalp injury is more than a small scrape, a visit to the emergency room can help prevent infection.
Skull injuries. The skull protects the brain. The bones of the skull can break or crack. An open skull fracture occurs when the scalp is torn and the bone is exposed leading to a risk of infection. A closed skull fracture occurs when the scalp is intact and the bone is not exposed or contaminated. Types of skull fractures include:
Falls and accidents involving bicycles and motor vehicles are the most common cause of spine injuries in young children. Motor vehicle accidents are also a common cause of spine injuries in adolescents.
Spine injuries can damage the bones of the spine (vertebrae) or the spinal cord. Some injuries involve fractures or dislocations of the bones around the spine. These may require surgery to stabilize the bones so they do not move and injure the spinal cord. If the bones are displaced, they may bruise or injure the spinal cord causing weakness, paralysis, changes in ability to feel or difficulty in controlling bowel and bladder function.
Neurosurgeons and emergency medicine specialists at Riley at IU Health perform the following exams and tests to diagnose head and spine injuries:
A patient's prognosis depends on the severity of the head or spine injury. The neurosurgery team at Riley at IU Health works to maintain and maximize functions controlled by the brain and spinal cord, including speech, movement and memory.
Treatments focus on reducing pressure on the brain, preventing infections and restoring alignment and stability to the spine.
Treatment options for head injury may include:
Treatment options for spine injury may include:
Visit the links below to learn more about head and spine injuries and find support groups.
Riley at IU Health offers a broad range of supportive services to make life better for families who choose us for their children's care.
This organization funds research and provides support for patients and families living with spinal cord injuries.
This nonprofit works to improve outcomes for patients with traumatic brain injuries through research and education.
In addition to our primary hospital location at the Academic Health Center in Indianapolis, IN, we have convenient locations to better serve our communities throughout the state.
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