Monthly Archives: December 2015

Researchers say even mild concussions leave brain scars

People in San Francisco who have been diagnosed with mild traumatic brain injuries may still have long-lasting brain damage, according to a study published in December 2015. Researchers from the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center found evidence of scarring on the brains of soldiers who had previously been diagnosed with mild concussions.

The study was conducted by looking at more than 800 brain scans from soldiers with mild traumatic brain injuries. Over half of the brain scans that were analyzed had abnormalities in the white matter, or the brain component that transmits signals from one part to another. It was previously thought that mild brain injuries would not be detectable in scans, but the study has disproved this theory.

Researchers who conducted the study used an advanced type of MRI to detect brain abnormalities. The lead researcher said that the scans showed that little scars had formed where the body was trying to repair some mild brain damage. Since 2000, over 300,000 U.S. military service members have received a traumatic brain injury diagnosis. Concussions are often diagnosed with cognitive assessments as normal MRI and CT scans cannot detect signs of mild brain damage.

Many people sustain brain damage from a physical force to the head during a car accident or a sudden fall. A traumatic brain injury can have a significant impact on an individual’s life, including decreased cognitive and physical functioning. An attorney can often assist a person who has suffered from a brain injury that was caused by the negligence of another party in seeking compensation through a personal injury lawsuit for the damages that have been incurred.

How brain trauma might occur

If a California resident has the misfortune to undergo severe trauma to their head, perhaps as part of an accident or incident beyond their control, then damage to the brain may result. This type of injury has the potential to destroy the sufferer’s quality of life. They can lose control over all or part of their body, their ability to function in society can be impaired and they may encounter any number of other symptoms. Research into this issue has revealed a possible reason as to how this injury takes place.

There is a phenomenon known as cavitation that occurs when bubbles form in a fluid. It is known to happen when a pressure wave travels through the fluid, reflecting differently in areas of different density. The reflections cause areas of lower pressure, and bubbles may form in those areas. When the bubbles that form are extremely small, the process is known as microcavitation.

Researchers into brain trauma believe that microcavitation might be the source of brain damage caused by sudden impact or repeated traumas to the head. The process of pressure waves moving through the tissues and fluids of the brain may cause tiny bubbles to form inside the structure, disrupting function and robbing key brain areas of the ability to function unhindered.

People who have suffered brain trauma could face severe economic losses. Their ability to earn a living may be impacted, medical bills can be exorbitant and the therapy required to regain some level of function might be very expensive as well. An attorney may be able to help a victim file a civil suit against any person or party responsible for the injury.

Source: Student Science, “Bubbles may underlie trauma’s brain injury,” Sid Perkins, Dec. 13, 2015

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