Articles Posted in Brain Injury

rmwtvqn5rzu-jesse-orrico-300x199When we discuss concussions and other traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) in kids in Carlsbad and throughout California, we often think about teen athletes who sustain head trauma in contact sports. However, as the Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA) explains, there are many ways in which children sustain mild TBIs and more serious head wounds. For example, the majority of brain injuries in children occur in motor vehicle crashes (more than 60,000 every year), followed by fall-related injuries. More than 500,000 kids require treatment in emergency departments every year as a result of TBIs.

All of this is to say that parents should be considering the long-term risks of TBIs even when their kids do not play sports but sustain a concussion or another serious head injury after falling from a bike or being involved in a traffic collision. According to a recent report in CBS News, kids who recover from TBIs may be at risk of developing ADHD at a later point. Indeed, as the report indicates, “young children who sustain a severe head injury may struggle with attention problems as they grow older.” What else do parents in Carlsbad need to know about TBIs in children and ADHD risks?

New Study Addresses Long-Term Implications of Severe TBI in Children

joao-victor-xavier-304057-copy-300x169Athletes and other individuals in Valley Center who sustain concussions and other traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) may be more likely to develop early-onset Alzheimer’s disease, according to a recent study reported in Science Daily. Although the researchers behind the study emphasize that their results should not prevent parents from allowing their children to play sports and to engage in other extracurricular activities, it is nonetheless important to recognize that, for the first time, there is a clear link between TBI and Alzheimer’s disease.

If you want to read the study in detail, you can find the results published in the peer-reviewed journal Neuropsychology. In the meantime, what else should Southern California residents know about the new study?

Details of the TBI and Alzheimer’s Study

joao-victor-xavier-304057-copy-300x169Do you have a child who currently plays a contact sport such as football or soccer in Escondido? Do you often worry about the risks of concussion and the likelihood of coaches properly identifying concussion risks on the field? An article in the National Academies Press, which is a journal connected to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, concussions are notoriously difficult to detect.

The article underscores that “part of the underreporting of concussions stems from the fact that the injury cannot be seen,” given that “with a concussion, there is no obvious injury such as when an arm or leg is dislocated.” There are, of course, signs and symptoms of concussions, but these are not always dispositive. As such, teen athletes and others who sustain blows to the head may suffer from concussions but may not be properly diagnosed. A missed diagnosis or improper diagnosis can result in long-term harm.

However, according to a recent article in The New York Times, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has now approved a blood test that is designed to detect concussions. How does it work?

rmwtvqn5rzu-jesse-orrico-300x199If your child plays football or another contact sport in Vista, it is important to learn more about a recent study suggesting that other hits to the head—and not just concussions—can cause chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). According to a recent report in the Washington Post, a new study has examined the brains of teenage athletes and has determined that signs of CTE appear even when those teen athletes did not sustain concussions but simply received hits to the head.

Since information about CTE and traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) entered into our lexicon, we have been taught that concussions are the cause of this degenerative disease. Now, however, it looks as if blows to the head that are not severe enough to cause a concussion may also result in this debilitating and ultimately deadly disease.

Concussions May be Irrelevant in Triggering CTE

hush-naidoo-382152-copy-300x200We often hear about the long-term risks of traumatic brain injury (TBI) in Poway and elsewhere in the San Diego area, such as chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), particularly among athletes in contact sports who have sustained multiple concussions. Can head injury risks lead to other types of physical injuries, as well? According to a recent article in Science Daily, a group of researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) have concluded that there is a “two-way link between traumatic brain injury and intestinal changes.” Those intestinal changes, in turn, resulted in more infections and in same cases “worsen[ed] chronic brain damage.”

To be clear, the new study suggests that brain trauma may be linked to additional physical injury. What do you need to know about the study’s conclusions?

Brain Damage Triggers Changes in the Colon

joao-victor-xavier-304057-copy-300x169If your teenager plays contact sports or engages in other activities in San Clemente that increases his or her risk of a concussion, is it better to avoid these sports altogether? Do the benefits of team sports and individual recreational activities outweigh the potential harms associated with a mild traumatic brain injury (TBI)? According to a recent report from NPR, teens may be sustaining concussions at a higher rate than most parents would like to believe. The report cites a research letter that was recently published in the peer-reviewed journal JAMA, which indicates that “approximately 20 percent of teens . . . have been diagnosed with at least one concussion.”

What is causing teen concussions at such a high rate? What steps can parents take to reduce the risk of a TBI altogether, and to ensure that their child heals properly after sustaining a head trauma?

High School Students Surveyed About History of Head Injuries

joao-victor-xavier-304057-copy-300x169Is high school football in San Marcos really as dangerous as scientists and physicians have been suggesting? Does playing high school football increase young athletes’ risk for sports-related concussions and more serious traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), in addition to placing them in danger of developing the degenerative brain condition known as chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE)? Most physicians would say, in general, yes. However, according to a new study published in JAMA Neurology, not all high school football players appear to have sustained long-term damage from playing the sport in their youth. High school football players in the 1950s did not, on the whole, show signs of cognitive impairment.

This study appears to call into question some of the recent research on TBIs and high school football. What are the key takeaways from this study, and should this research change the way we manage the risk of brain injuries in contact sports?

Study Explores Link Between Youth Sports-Related Concussions and Long-Term Cognitive Health

rmwtvqn5rzu-jesse-orrico-300x199Many residents of Oceanside have followed news about sports-related concussions and the lifelong effects of traumatic brain injuries (TBIs). According to a recent article in the Washington Post, scientists have developed a new way of tracking and identifying a protein that may help to address the link between contact injuries and the risks of brain damage in athletes. How can a protein help to address TBIs in sports?

In brief, the protein may be able to help researchers develop better tests for identifying TBIs and treating them more quickly. What is this protein, exactly, and how might it be able to help residents of Oceanside and other areas of Southern California to obtain better treatment for brain injuries?

Learning More About the Protein Called “NFL”

rmwtvqn5rzu-jesse-orrico-300x199If you or someone you love recently sustained a traumatic brain injury (TBI) in San Marcos, you likely have many questions about how you will get medical care. Currently, regional disability services are not available to victims of TBIs when they sustain them after the age of 18, according to a report from KHTS Santa Clarita News. However, newly proposed legislation aims to allow younger California residents—between the ages of 18 and 22—to receive access to regional disability services. The proposed legislation, Senate Bill 283, is a measure introduced by State Senator Scott Wilk, a Republican from Santa Clarita.

If the bill passes, how will it better serve TBI victims in California? What else should you know in the meantime about traumatic brain injuries?

Senate Bill 283 Aims to Provide Disability Services to Broader Population

800px-DBrickashaw_Ferguson_shaking_hands-300x196For youth athletes or college football players in San Diego County, it is important to understand the potentially hazardous effects of enduring a hit to the head during practice or play. A sports-related concussion can lead to long-term consequences, and may impact the likelihood of the player developing chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) later in life. While we know that mild traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) like concussions can have serious effects, we still do not know precisely how a hit to the head impacts a player’s brain at the time of the hit. However, according to a recent article in The New York Times, a newly developed mouth guard with motion sensors may help to clarify the process of sustaining a concussion.

What Happens to a Brain After a Hit to the Head?

As the article clarifies, the information researchers have used primarily in determining what happens to a brain during a hit to the head has been acquired through helmets that have sensors in them. However, this technique has proven to be somewhat problematic because “the helmet can move independently of the skull.” According to Dr. Robert Cantu, a clinical professor of neurosurgery at Boston University’s School of Medicine, “the forces you’re measuring with those are not really exactly what the brain is seeing.” As such there was an urgent need to develop a new kind of technology that could more accurately record the effects of a hit to the head on a player’s skull.

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