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Study looks at behavior changes from TBI

Pennsylvania readers might be interested to learn that individuals who suffer from a traumatic brain injury may show behavior changes soon after their injury has occurred. There are two ways that a trauma-related brain disease might develop; either the person will exhibit behavior and mood disorders or they'll exhibit cognitive impairment.

Researchers are looking at the symptoms of chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE, which is a condition resulting from repeated traumatic brain injury and can only be diagnosed after the person dies. The study, which was supported by the National Institutes of Health and several other groups, is attempting to establish the symptoms of CTE while a person is still alive. This may enable researchers and physicians to develop potential treatments or cures for the condition.

At this point in time, all known cases of CTE have been found in those who've experienced repeated brain trauma, such as combat-experienced military personnel, football players and boxers. Not everyone who's exposed to repeated brain trauma will develop CTE. The disease is characterized by several symptoms, including cerebellar and motor dysfunction, chronic headache, and mood and behavior disturbance. Earlier research involving boxers also hinted at two types of symptoms. Younger people tended to experience mood and behavior disturbances while older people often had cognitive impairment.

When a person dies of a TBI, the family may be left with significant hospital bills, the loss of the individual's income and funeral expenses. A Pennsylvania personal injury attorney might be able to provide valuable assistance to surviving family members. The attorney may negotiate directly with the insurance company, saving the family stress and hassle. In some situations, such as those when a third party caused the injury, the attorney may suggest a civil court trial. In that case, the attorney may prepare and present an argument on behalf of the family.

Source: Medpage Today, "Behavior Changes Show Up Early in Traumatic Brain Injury", Charles Bankhead, August 22, 2013

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