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April 2016 Archives

Study highlights TBI risks for older adults

Older adults in West Virginia and around the country who have certain conditions could face an elevated risk of experiencing a traumatic brain injury. Researchers in a study published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society linked heart problems, depression, difficulty with daily activities or suffering from more than one chronic disease to a higher rate of traumatic brain injuries among that segment of the population.

Company developing headband to measure head trauma

West Virginia residents often sustain traumatic brain injuries when they accidentally slip and fall on a wet or uneven surface. Contact sports, car accidents and assaults are some other common causes of these types of head injuries. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that 50,000 people die annually from TBIs, and these injuries result in 2.2 million emergency room visits a year.

New trucking regulations delayed

Trucking companies in West Virginia and around the will have more time before they are required to comply with new regulations proposed by the Department of Transportation. In its monthly update, the DOT confirmed that two new rules it had proposed have been delayed. The proposed regulations concern speed limiters and a database for truckers who have failed or refused to take a drug or alcohol test.

Study shows some retired NFL players had brain injuries

West Virginia football fans may not be particularly surprised that more than 40 percent of retired NFL players who were involved in a study showed evidence of having abnormal brain structures. Additionally, approximately 50 percent of the participants showed serious problems when taking cognitive tests that included reasoning, planning and problem-solving.

Distractions and hands-free advances

Issues such as texting and driving have resulted in a major movement to minimize the use of smartphones while on the roads in West Virginia and across the nation. However, some of the technologies that have been developed to facilitate safer communications on the road do not necessarily eliminate distractions. The fact that these technologies have been incorporated into the dashboards of many vehicles causes numerous drivers to believe that their use is safe. However, these technologies are targeted more at the convenience of the driver than at safety.

Overview of traumatic brain injuries

West Virginia residents often incur traumatic brain injuries when they are involved in car accidents or serious falls. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that over half of TBIs are sustained in those two types of events. TBIs can range from mild to severe, and a concussion is a synonymous term for a mild TBI.

Construction workers and brain injuries

Most people would probably agree that West Virginia construction workers are engaged in a high-risk occupation. This was confirmed by a study of the risk of traumatic brain injury to which workers in various industries are exposed. According to a report based on the results of the study, more than 2,200 construction workers around the country died between 2003 and 2010 from brain trauma. The deaths represented 25 percent of total fatalities from all causes during that period in the construction industry.

Construction brain injuries

Between 2003 and 2010, there were 2,210 deaths attributed to a traumatic brain injury in the construction industry. This translates to a rate of 2.6 deaths per 100,000 workers, and they accounted for a quarter of all deaths in the industry during that time period. However, the number of fatalities caused by TBIs declined each year between 2003 and 2010.

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