Brain injuries and their consequences are one of the most difficult unsettled problems of modern medicine. They are of paramount importance due to their prevalence and serious medical and social consequences. Typically, the number of people who suffered a head injury significantly increases in periods of wars and years around them. However, in peacetime, due to increasing the level of technical development, injury rates are quite high.
Types of head injuries
Brain injuries are mechanical damages of the brain and skull bones, varied in type and severity. Head injuries are divided into open and closed. When an injury is closed, the integrity of skull bones is not violated, but if it is, the injury is open. Open head injuries can be penetrating and non-penetrating. Penetrating injuries imply damaged brain substance and meninx; with non-penetrating injuries the brain and brain membranes remain intact.
Forensic medical investigation of brain injuries
Forensic psychiatric evaluation of persons in personal injury cases is ambiguous and depends on the stage and clinical implications of the disease. The most complex is expert assessment of the acuity of traumatic disease, because experts do not observe it personally. To assess the mental condition in retrospect, they use medical documentation of surgical hospitals, where the patient usually is sent immediately after getting a head injury, criminal case files and the patient’s description regarding their state in that period. In view of the retro- and anterograde amnesia the information reported by patients is extremely scarce. However, practice shows that in the acute period of traumatic disease serious illegal actions against the person, transport crimes are often committed. The expert evaluation of the victims becomes massively important.
Forensic psychiatric examination of the victims who sustained a head injury in a criminal situation has its peculiarities. In such case a set of issues is observed, such as
the ability of a person to perceive the facts of the case and to give testimony,
the ability to understand the character illegal acts committed against them,
the ability to participate in the judicial and investigative activities and exercise their right to protection (capacity to sue) regarding their mental state.
In respect of such persons comprehensive evaluation is carried out by the representative of forensics, who state the severity of injuries sustained in the result of the criminal situation in head injuries. If a person got minor injury, he or she can correctly perceive the circumstances of the incident and give testimony, as well as understand the nature and significance of action and to exercise their right to defense with the help of brain injury lawyer.