What is acquired brain injury (ABI)?

The term acquired brain injury, or ABI, is used to describe any injury or damage to the brain that occurs after birth.

Defining acquired brain injury: ‘Acquired brain injury (ABI) is injury to the brain which results in deterioration in cognitive, physical, emotional or independent functioning.

Acquired brain injury can occur as a result of trauma, hypoxia [where a person has less than the normal level of oxygen in the body], infection, tumour, substance abuse, degenerative neurological diseases or stroke. These impairments to cognitive abilities or physical functioning may be either temporary or permanent and cause partial or total disability or psychosocial maladjustment.’
(National Policy on Services for People with Acquired Brain Injury, 1994).

What are some common causes of ABI?

There are many possible causes of brain injury including trauma, medical events and degenerative neurological condition. The Brain Injury Association of Tasmania provides more information about the  causes of brain injury at our specific page.

What are the outcomes of acquired brain injury?

The outcomes and effects of ABI are different for each person and often depend on the cause, nature and severity of the injury.

Some effects of brain injury are only experienced in the short term, but many permanently impact on the person’s ability to lead an independent life.

Learn more about the effects of ABI.