If what a new study says is true, those that have recently received brain injuries in Illinois may want to seek treatment or spend an extra few days recuperating from the injury. Brain injuries often occur due to sports and accidents, some of which result in lasting effects that could increase an individual's risk for depression or brain abnormalities.
The new study was published in The Journal of Neuroscience and findings from it have indicated that abnormalities in the brain resulting from mild traumatic brain injuries can last for days. These abnormalities include the way that axons fire in the brain, even in regions where the injury had no direct impact. Axons firing in altered ways could contribute to dysfunction throughout the brain network, which may result in abnormal neurocognitive results.
A study in 1998 indicated that there was a difference in brain activation between people who recently received traumatic brain injuries and those that had no injuries. Despite these differences in activation, the study found that there was no significant change in memory-related task performance.
According to another study published in the American Journal of Neuroradiology, there is a weak correlation between neuroimaging discoveries and the performance of individuals. The study did find that, despite no significant change in the performance of various activities between those that had injuries and those that had not, people with brain injuries had slower reaction times.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that about 1.7 million people sustain traumatic brain injuries each year. Approximately 75 percent of those are concussions or mild forms of injury. According to researchers, more than 300,000 U.S. veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan have sustained a mild traumatic brain injury. That equates to about 20 percent of the 1.6 million soldiers involved.
Research has shown that people who have experienced such an injury are at a heightened risk for depression.
Source: Medical Daily, "Even Mild Traumatic Injury May Alter Brain Function," May 12, 2012