EVAN OTO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY EVAN OTO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
An illustration of a traumatic brain injury, during which neurons can become stretched, twisted or sheared as the brain shifts inside the skull. The initial impact, also known as the coup, produces a force that causes the brain to recoil and hit the opposite side of the skull, producing a contrecoup injury. These types of injuries are most commonly caused by falls, car accidents or during contact sports. Axonal injuries to a neuron are permanent, and will often lead to the death of the cell.
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