Articles Posted in Brain Injuries

playground-swings-300x199A new study finds that children who suffer from traumatic brain injury may suffer consequences that continue for a longer period of time than earlier believed.

A child’s delicate brain is much more likely to sustain impact during a head injury, and that impact could cause long-term consequences. According to a new study conducted by researchers at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, some of those effects could actually last for years after the injury.

The results of the study were presented recently at a conference of the Association of Academic Physiatrists. The researchers found that children who had suffered a mild to moderate brain injury were twice as likely to suffer from attention and concentration problems for as long as seven years after the injury. Children, who had suffered a severe traumatic brain injury, had a risk of developing secondary attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) that was five times higher than children without a history of TBI.

00.WheelchairA new spinal injury treatment program focused on brain training has helped eight people who had serious spinal cord injuries regain some level of sensation and movement in their bodies.

According to researchers, the step-by-step brain training seemed to help trigger a connection between brain impulses and the body. The eight patients who had suffered paralysis after a spinal cord injury underwent training using virtual reality simulators and exoskeletons. After a period of time, the researchers found that the training helped trigger impulses in many of the undamaged nerves that had not been destroyed in the accidents and falls that caused these spinal cord injuries.

After these weeks of training, the researchers found that these patients were not able to move any of their limbs, and had no tactile sensation in the region below the level of the site of the injury. Some of the patients were also able to recover bladder control.  These functions had been lost after their injury.

accupuncture1063One of the long-term consequences of traumatic brain injury is recurrent headaches. A new study finds that acupuncture could provide relief to people who have suffered a traumatic brain injury and are struggling with these headaches.

The study was published recently in the journal Medical Acupuncture, and found that auricular acupuncture was more beneficial in helping reduce the impact of headaches, compared to traditional Chinese acupuncture. The study was performed on members of the US military, who had suffered mild to moderate traumatic brain injury, and continued to suffer headaches as a result of their injuries. Traumatic brain injury is an epidemic in the US military, and approximately 80 percent of service members who have suffered a brain injury complain of recurrent headaches.

The researchers monitored these service members over the six-week study period, and evaluated the quality of life of those who were given normal care, with those who were given either auricular acupuncture or traditional acupuncture sessions. They found that the service members, who had been provided auricular acupuncture treatments, were better able to deal with their headache symptoms.

Several rough sports, like football, have a bad reputation when it comes to brain injury. However, the most brain injury-prone sport, may be something else altogether. According to a recent study by the journal Neurological Focus, the sport that causes the highest number of brain injuries every year is not even a contact sport.

horse ridingSurprisingly, the sport of greatest concern is horse riding. According to the study which focused on brain injuries documented in a database, the sport that caused the highest number of brain injuries was horseback riding, contributing to approximately 45% of brain injuries involving adults. Horse riding, in fact was the single leading cause of brain injury, with the second leading cause of brain injury involving contact sports like football and soccer. However, these two sports accounted for just about 20% of all brain injuries that occurred while playing sports.

That’s not the only study that points to the dangers of riding a horse. Another study that focused on children and adults found that horse riding was the third leading cause of brain injuries. In fact, horseback riding is actually much more closely linked to injuries that result in hospital admissions, than other types of high-risk activities, including motorcycling.

stair slip and fallA brain injury occurs when the head suffers a certain trauma. The trauma may come in the form of a jolt, blow, bump or even a penetrating head injury. Traumatic brain injuries can range all the way from mild brain injuries like concussions, which account for a majority of traumatic brain injuries recorded in the United States each year, to more severe brain injuries that can leave a person in a vegetative state.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, falls are the leading cause of traumatic brain injury. The agency estimates that between 2006 and 2010, fall accidents accounted for approximately 40% of all brain injuries that were recorded in the United States.

What makes a fall even more dangerous is that young people, as well as seniors are equally susceptible to falls. Unlike other brain injury causes like motor vehicle accidents that are much more likely to affect young male motorists, fall accidents can also impact young children. It is reported that 55% of brain injuries among children between the ages of 1 and 14 were caused by fall accidents. In addition, more than 81% of the injuries caused in seniors above the age of 65 were caused by falls.

brain.jpgInjury to the brain can be some of the most devastating trauma a person can suffer. One reason for this is that there remains no complete cure for a brain injury. In addition, successful treatment is heavily dependent on reducing damage after the injury has occurred. The smaller the subsequent damage, the greater the chance of reducing long-term effects. This is why a new study is so exciting. New research found that vacuum treatment used soon after a brain injury can help reduce the severity of the injury and promote recovery of the patient.

Researchers investigated the effects of using controlled vacuum or mechanical tissue resuscitation to heal sections of the brain damaged by injury. The researchers experimented with the therapy on swine that had localized, controlled brain injuries. Different levels of vacuum therapy were used and the resulting effects of the therapy were compared.

The investigators also focused on the effects of the use of mechanical tissue resuscitation after 3 or 5 days. They evaluated the effects of the therapy differed and how it differed when treatment was administered immediately or within three or six hours of the brain injury.
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slippery%20when%20wet.jpgTraumatic brain injuries are some of the most serious injuries that occur in car accidents. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, each year 1.4 million people sustain a traumatic brain injury that is serious enough to require a visit to the hospital.

Some of the most common causes of traumatic brain injuries are car accidents, motorcycle and bicycle accidents, and slip and falls. Traumatic brain injuries can also occur as a result of violent acts, like blunt force trauma or gunshots. However, not all traumatic brain injuries are the same. Fortunately, a majority of all brain injuries are mild brain injuries like minor concussions, that may not have any life-threatening consequences, or involve long-term disability.

However, that doesn’t mean that concussions have no consequences at all. A study recently found that even mild concussions can cause thinking problems and affect memory even weeks after the injury occurs. Typically, a concussion occurs during a minor accident or a minor fall. Symptoms can include headache, nausea, vomiting, fatigue, and concentration problems.
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brain%20scan%2032.jpgThose years of pulling all-nighters as you worked toward your college degree could be useful for more than getting a better job – higher education could actually help protect your brain against an injury. According to scientists at Johns Hopkins, a new study clearly finds that people who have had a lot of education are more likely to survive with no measurable disability after a brain injury.

According to the researchers, it is a dramatic difference, and the study clarifies that people with high education levels are seven times more likely compared to high school dropouts, to have no serious disability one year after a brain injury. In other words, the brains of people with higher education levels are able to somehow find their way around the kind of damage that can result after a brain injury.

The study focused on 769 persons who suffered a brain injury and evaluated their condition about one year after the injury. They found that about 39% of the brain injury patients who had earned a college degree, suffered no disability. However, among high school dropouts, the rate of persons with no disability was just 10%. People who had advanced college degrees seemed to fare much better in the amount of protection that their brains had against the long-term effects of a brain injury. These brains recovered much quicker from the injury, and the people were left with no lasting effects at then end of the one-year study period.
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oxygen%2013.jpgLack of oxygen supply at birth, or oxygen deprivation during or around the time of birth, increases the risk that the baby will suffer from hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy, or birth asphyxia. This is a condition in which the baby suffers from oxygen deprivation around the time of birth, leading to a number of long-term health effects, not least among which is brain damage. According to new studies, this oxygen deprivation at birth does not have to be at high levels to result in long-term neurological effects.

The research was conducted by scientists at University College Cork, and analyzed the brainwaves of 60 babies who were diagnosed with hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy at birth. The analysis indicated that even in those cases where the birth asphyxia was at mild levels, the baby did suffer from long-term mental and other health problems. Specifically, there were developmental delays, concentration problems, learning difficulties and other problems as the child progressed in age.
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radiology%20of%20brain.jpgDiagnosing a traumatic brain injury in the future could be as simple as using a handheld tool to administer a simple blood test. Researchers at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln have announced that they are currently developing a brain injury diagnostic tool that can be used to diagnose injuries on the spot using a handheld device.

The device can be used to administer a blood test to a person who has suffered a brain injury. The test will determine the presence of a specific protein that is released into the blood stream of the victim soon after a brain injury. The test will determine the existence of the protein as well as assess the quantities of the protein, in order to determine the severity of the injury.

Many cases of brain injury have less than promising outcomes, because of delayed treatment for these patients. There is no complete cure for brain injuries, and there are no medications that can completely restore the function of the brain to the levels before the injury. Doctors can attempt to reduce the severity of the brain injury, by beginning treatment immediately. For this, it’s important that diagnosis be completed as quickly as possible.
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