About 1.7 million people suffer traumatic brain injuries in the United States each year. The most common TBI patients are soldiers (estimated by the military to be about 200,000), athletes and people involved in car and truck accidents.
Diagnosing the extent of damage suffered by the brain is often a very difficult process. Brain cells communicate with one another through a system of nerve fibers that works like a telephone network, making up what’s called the “white matter” of the brain. “White matter” runs along cable-like highways called fiber tracts that contain millions of connections. Traumatic brain injuries “break” or interrupt these connections.
New Diagnostic Tool for TBIs
Thankfully, scientists are testing a new MRI-based tool that lights up these interruptions that traumatic brain injuries often cause in the brain’s wiring. According to cbsnews.com, the new tool resembles the way X-rays show broken bones.
Most TBIs are concussions and other milder injuries that heal on their own. However, even these smaller injuries to the brain can have a cumulative effect. Until now, doctors could not tell how much damage had accumulated and whether the next blow could be the fatal one. Moreover, doctors could not see beyond the bleeding and swelling to tell whether the break in the connection was too great for it to repair itself.
The new technology is called high-definition fiber tracking and allows doctors to look for breaks that slow or stop nerve connections that are not likely to repair themselves. One very important result deriving from these scans is that by telling which nerve connections are injured (as well as how many and how badly), doctors can “tailor” therapy to the patient’s particular injury and make a much more accurate prediction of his or her chances for rehabilitation. Unfortunately, these scans are only about 40% effective, but still more useful than prior techniques. That means that approximately 60% of TBI patients will test as “within the norm’, when they are not.
Other New Techniques for Treating Traumatic Brain Injuries
Military researchers are looking into using more powerful CT Scans to detect changes in the blood flow within a patient’s brain that could help them find traumatic brain injuries. On the other hand, civilian researchers are looking into substances that may enter the bloodstream of a TBI patient after the accident in the hope of creating a blood test that may help them diagnose the injury.
The Lawyers at Greenberg, Stone & Urbano Can Help
If you or a loved one have suffered a traumatic brain injury as a result of a car accident, a truck accident, an amusement park accident or as a result of any other kind of accident, the lawyers at Greenberg Stone and Urbano can help. Our more than 60 years of combined experience, provides victims that have suffered any kind of traumatic brain injury with the edge they need to obtain the compensation they may be entitled to for their rehabilitation.
The Miami Dade County Traumatic Brain Injury Law Offices of Greenberg, Stone & Urbano have throughout the years represented many clients that have suffered traumatic brain injuries. Please note that our practice has been extended with a new satellite office in Aventura to better serve clients that reside in Ft. Lauderdale, Hollywood, Hallandale Beach, Dania & Dania Beach, Miramar, North Miami, North Miami Beach, Aventura, Miami Beach, Surfside, Sunny Isles and Miami Gardens. Visit our website to learn more about our firm and contact us today for a free consultation.