Articles Posted in Brain Injury

matthew-fournier-G971e4EFKtA-unsplash-copy-300x187While most of us do not associate life in Oceanside, CA with ice hockey, there are certainly ice hockey teams in Southern California, and many high school students play hockey with an aim of playing in college or afterward. The universities in the UC system also have hockey teams, and both men and women enjoy club hockey at the nearby University of California, San Diego campus. Although California might not be known for its hockey, young people do play ice hockey here. According to a recent report in CBS News, they may be at greater risk of a concussion than researchers previously reported. Women, in particular, may sustain concussions at a much higher rate in ice hockey than scientists previously believed. 

Risks of Ice Hockey and Head Trauma

According to the recent report, concussions in women’s ice hockey are much more common than you might think. Many of the players are beginning to think more carefully about how they are exposed to serious risks of a traumatic brain injury (TBI). A recent study conducted by researchers at the Minnesota Department of Health determined that “girls, particularly girls who play hockey, are more likely to get concussions than boys.” Some of the reason is “biological,” according to Dr. Uzma Samadani, a brain surgeon. As Dr. Samadani clarified, “boys have stronger necks and thicker skulls.”

attentie-attentie-ig7vN6OkGNE-unsplash-copy-300x200Whether you recently suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI) in Poway or elsewhere in Southern California, you should learn about a recent study that identifies potential biomarkers for chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). According to an article in MedPage Today discussing the study, researchers have determined that brain region volume may help us to better understand CTE and ways that repeated concussions can result in degenerative brain conditions. The new study specifically assessed boxers and MMA fighters who showed “distinct brain injury patterns.” We will tell you more about the recent study and what its implications could be for future CTE studies and brain injury claims.

 Tracking Brain Injury in Athletes and Other People with Repetitive Head Impacts

Many recent studies surrounding TBIs and other serious brain injuries differentiate between one-time head trauma and repeated head injuries, such as multiple concussions. The recent study specifically assessed repetitive head impacts, or RHI, among professional fighters. That study was conducted by a team of researchers led by Dr. Charles Bernick of the Cleveland Clinic. According to the article, Bernick’s research showed that “active professional fighters showed different patterns of brain volume loss than fighters who have retired from the ring,” and “these differences may lead to biomarkers to track changes in people with repetitive head impacts.”

aliyah-jamous-1058056-unsplash-copy-300x200A large majority of discussions about traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) in the last decade have focused on sports-related concussions and head trauma sustained by active-duty service members. In particular, a substantial portion of TBI research has focused on the prevalence of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) among NFL football players and others involved in contact sports. In relation to studies concerning professional athletes, much research also has identified the risks of sports-related concussions among youth athletes. 

Yet few studies have considered the rate and effects of concussions sustained by women who are involved in “intimate partner violence,” according to a recent article in The New York Times. In response to that research shortage, Dr. Eve Valera has begun to analyze concussions among women who have sustained head injuries inflicted by domestic partners.

Limited Studies on Brain Trauma, Women, and Domestic Violence

joao-victor-xavier-304057-copy-300x169Children in Escondido can suffer concussions and other types of traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) just as adults can. There are many common causes of TBIs in both kids and adults, including, for example, car crashes and sports-related accidents. According to a recent report in U.S. News & World Report, some sports and recreational activities are much more hazardous than others when it comes to brain injury risks for kids. More specifically, a majority of children who sustain traumatic brain injuries in sports- or recreation-related activities sustain those injuries while playing football or soccer. 

CDC Study Discusses Dangers of Contact Sports for Kids

This information about the serious risks of both football and soccer for kids was published in a new study conducted by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). That study emphasized that contact sports are the most dangerous in terms of TBI risks, resulting in approximately 45% of all brain injuries that send kids to emergency departments every year. In general, football was the cause of the highest number of TBIs in male children, while soccer was the leading cause of brain injuries in female children. According to the report, “contact sports resulted in nearly twice as many TBI [emergency department] visits as did non-contact sports and four times those associated with recreation-related activities.”

nathan-dumlao-1064615-unsplash-copy-200x300Whether you live in San Marcos or elsewhere in the San Diego County area, it is important to know about electric scooters and the personal injury risks they pose. According to a recent news release from the University of California, new research suggests that e-scooters are tied to high rates of traumatic brain injury (TBI), broken bones, and dislocated joints. Those who sustain these types of injuries on e-scooters require medical attention, and some seemingly less serious injuries also require riders to seek treatment in an emergency department.

Why are e-scooters dangerous, and how should residents around San Diego County respond?

New Study Ties Electric Scooters to Serious Personal Injuries

jeffrey-f-lin-750541-unsplash-copy-300x200More research funds are going toward sports-related concussion studies and concussion risks for youth athletes. We often think about football and other contact sports when we consider traumatic brain injury (TBI) risks, yet many different sports and recreational activities can put young athletes at serious risk of sustaining a concussion.

A recent study conducted by researchers at Northwestern University found that concussions are more common than we previously thought among female soccer players. Nearly 30% of all soccer injuries are concussions. To put that number in perspective, about 24% of all football injuries are concussions. To put that another way, more girls suffer sports-related concussions playing soccer in high school than do boys who play football.

Girls Soccer Players Suffer Head Injuries More Often Than Boys Soccer Players

joao-victor-xavier-304057-copy-300x169Sports-related concussions and other types of traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) caused by contact sports have received significant attention in the last decade after numerous athletes showed signs of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). In response to the high rate of brain trauma among youth athletes and professional athletes in contact sports in particular, researchers began engaging in in-depth studies surrounding football and head injuries. According to a recent study conducted at the University of Michigan, high school football players may have concussion biomarkers after taking a hit to the head without showing obvious symptoms.

This new research could help to prevent additional injuries among high school athletes, and it could ensure that youth football players receive the medical treatment and rest they need after suffering a mild TBI, even if they are not showing symptoms of a concussion.

Symptoms of Concussions May Not be Enough to Assess Likelihood of a TBI

bm0y9zmka1m-sean-brown-300x109Vista residents and others throughout Southern California who have suffered significant traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) should know that additional new research is being documented in this area all the time. More precisely, researchers continue to investigate the link between concussions and chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). According to a recent press release from University of California, Davis, funding from the Pew Foundation will support new initiatives that will involve research into the biochemistry behind brain trauma. The research is part of a broader initiative to investigate and combat TBIs—including concussions—in both youth and professional sports leagues.

Biochemistry, Hits to the Head, and Traumatic Brain Injury

As the press release discusses, we know that behavioral changes take place in the brain after concussions. What we do not know, however, is precisely how the biochemistry of the brain changes, ultimately leading to those mood shifts. Kassandra Ori-McKenney, an assistant professor of molecular and cellular biology at UC Davis, is researching TBIs and biochemistry. Ori-McKenney won fellowship and is the 2018 Pew biomedical scholar. The funding provides $300,000 over the course of four years, during which time Ori-McKenney “will investigate the role of the protein tau in the development of neurodegeneration resulting from traumatic brain injury.” Thus far, we know that there is a “strong correlation with the expression and spread of tau throughout the brain’s circularity.”

bm0y9zmka1m-sean-brown-300x109If you or someone you love recent sustained a jolt to the head that led you to have concerns about a concussion or a more severe traumatic brain injury (TBI), you may have visited a hospital in Southern California. This is a good start, yet visiting a doctor just once over a suspected concussion may be insufficient. While many concussions go untreated in general—meaning that the injury victim never seeks a medical assessment or medical treatment for the head wound—there is a new problem involving a lack of follow-up care. According to a recent news release from the University of Southern California, “most concussion patients get no care after leaving [the] hospital.”

What does this mean in practice? In short, more than 50% of people who suffer concussions fail to seek the follow-up care they need in order to recover from the injury.

Patients Risk Adverse Effects by Avoiding Follow-Up Treatment After a TBI

bm0y9zmka1m-sean-brown-300x109If you or someone you love suffers a concussion in San Marcos, it is important to know how that traumatic brain injury (TBI) could have effects years later. Much of the current news about head trauma and long-term effects concerns chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a degenerative disease of the brain that researchers believe results from multiple bumps or blows to the head. CTE is not the only possible long-term effect of sustaining a single—or multiple—concussions when you are younger. According to a recent article in Popular Science, a new study published in Neurology suggests that a single concussion “can significantly increase the risk of developing Parkinson’s disease.”

Even a Single, Mild Brain Injury can Have Effects Decades Later

The new study was conducted by researchers at the University of California, San Francisco. Their research indicates that the amount of a person’s increased risk of developing Parkinson’s disease after sustaining a mild TBI is “contingent on how severe the brain injury was, but even a mild brain injury raised the likelihood of Parkinson’s by as much as 56%.” Some of the most common mild traumatic brain injuries are concussions. To clarify, if you sustain a single concussion in your lifetime, your risk of developing Parkinson’s disease could increase by up to 56% in comparison with a person who has never sustained a concussion or another TBI.