Many women in Louisiana suffer traumatic brain injuries, or TBIs, from playing sports, serving in the military or getting in a car accident. However, since the vast majority of TBI research has been conducted on male brains, there is little information available about the ways female brains react to concussions.
For people in Louisiana who have suffered a head injury, it is important to obtain a quick and accurate diagnosis of the trauma. Brain injuries can be traumatic or acquired. In general, traumatic brain injury is caused by a force or similar impact. Examples include falls, car accidents or physical assaults. Acquired brain injury is something that happens to the brain after birth that does not involve external physical force. For example, it could describe damage due to a tumor, stroke or hypoxic brain injury.
Louisiana residents should know that traumatic brain injuries are a leading cause of accident-related deaths in the United States. In fact, there are nearly 138 TBI-related fatalities every day. Losing consciousness after a blow to the head is a surefire indicator of brain injury; however, TBIs can be caused by much more subtle events and have long-lasting consequences. Roughly 3 million people are treated in emergency rooms annually for brain injuries.
Motor vehicle accidents are a common cause of brain injuries in Louisiana. Researchers at the University of Maryland have found a link between traumatic brain injuries and changes in the colon that could lead to infection.
To Louisiana residents, the term traumatic brain injury may sound serious, and it is. However, concussions, which are a type of traumatic brain injury (TBI), are actually quite common. Lifestyle or profession can increase someone's risk of concussion, but everyone is at risk, largely due to the possibility of TBI caused by car accidents.
Scientists have developed a new blood test that may be able to diagnose traumatic brain injuries and concussions within an hour of the initial injury. The test might help patients in Louisiana and elsewhere get early treatment and avoid further injury.
Louisiana residents may not be aware of just how damaging a traumatic brain injury can be. In some cases, a TBI can lead to impaired memory, personality changes and other symptoms well after the injury occurs. Even though there has been increased research into the lasting effects of TBIs, diagnostic knowledge and effective treatments are still limited.
A person who is in a car accident in Louisiana may suffer from a traumatic brain injury. This injury may not always be immediately apparent, so it is important to know the signs. It is also important to note whether someone who has been diagnosed with a concussion has lingering symptoms. In some cases, symptoms may appear weeks or months later, and people may be unaware of them. Children, teenagers and older adults are the most likely to suffer from long-term symptoms.
Louisiana parents may be interested to learn that a spit test could help determine whether a child's concussion symptoms will last for several days or weeks. The spit test was shown to be about 90 percent accurate while a commonly used concussion survey is accurate in about 70 percent of cases.
Just as cars have suspension mechanisms that provide protection from bumps, the brain has a protection system in the form of membranes that provide cushion from impacts. For people in Louisiana who have suffered a traumatic brain injury, these membranes have failed to cushion the brain. In an effort to prevent or reduce TBI, researchers are looking at this system of protection more closely.