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A Simple Blood Test Could Predict TBI Recovery Times

Simple BloodData from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) indicate that approximately 1.7 million people suffer from a traumatic brain injury (TBI) every year. Most (around 80 percent) receive treatment and are then released from the hospital. Release does not always mean full recovery, however. In fact, many TBI sufferers spend weeks, months, or even years dealing with residual symptoms of their injury. That is not the worst part though. Because medicine currently lacks a test for predicting the recovery time for a TBI, victims may not know how long they will be unable to work or enjoy their normal lifestyle. A blood test could soon change that.

Results of the Study

Published in the journal Neurology, the study involved 600 different contact-sport athletes. Of those, 46 sustained a traumatic brain injury. Researchers analyzed their blood at various intervals (6 hours, 24 hours, and 72 hours after injury). They were specifically looking at a biomarker known as tau, which has been found in other studies that connected TBI with an increased risk of experience Alzheimer’s disease. Roughly 61 percent of the players who were advised not to play for 10 days or longer had a significantly higher concentration of this biomarker in their blood. This suggests that the blood test could be successful, approximately half of the time, in predicting which TBI sufferers will suffer long-term injuries.

Sports Players Could Bring Hope to all TBI Sufferers

While the recent study looked only at TBIs experienced while playing sports, there are many ways that one can experience a concussion - a fall, a bump on the head from falling tools or equipment, striking one’s head on a wall or low-hanging object, car crashes, and more. Thankfully, the method and use would transfer to all TBI sufferers. This means there could soon be hope for all TBI sufferers. Unfortunately, the test is far from ready to be used in a widespread fashion. The researchers first want to ensure the results can be duplicated. Secondly, they are hoping that further testing can produce more accurate detection of long-term TBI complications.

When a Work-Related TBI Leads to Long-Term Complications

While workers’ compensation may be able to ensure your medical bills are covered, it is rarely enough to cover living expenses. As such, it is important that victims have their cases analyzed to determine if there may be other options for pursuing compensation. Corsiglia, McMahon & Allard, LLP can conduct this analysis. If you have a case, we will fight for your rights and pursue the most favorable outcome possible. Schedule your consultation with our San Jose work injury lawyers by calling (408) 289-1417.

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