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June 2016 Archives

Orlando tragedy highlights security vulnerabilities

Like all Americans, West Virginia residents were likely horrified by the mass shooting that killed 49 people at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida, on June 12. The tragedy has security experts offering advice to bar and club owners on how to prevent or contain similar incidents on their property.

Traumatic brain injuries appear to cause depression

Many West Virginia residents have sustained a traumatic brain injury in a car accident or sudden fall. This is a serious wound to the brain caused by some sort of forceful blow, and it brings with it a host of symptoms that have the potential to linger. Mental, physical, social and psychological symptoms are all known to result from TBIs in different ways and at different intensities.

Medical advances in distinguishing PTSD from TBI

Symptoms such as fatigue, anxiety, and concentration difficulties can be representative of various types of medical conditions affecting a West Virginia patient, including traumatic brain injuries or post-traumatic stress disorder. However, a correct diagnosis of the cause of these conditions in West Virginia and other states can be challenging because there is not a reliable method for screening patients for them. Although estimates suggest that millions of adults suffer from one or both of these conditions annually, diagnostic difficulties result in missed diagnosis in many of these cases.

Disney knew of gator dangers well before the attack

Disney is a popular household name for West Virginia parents and their children, but tragedy struck in June when a child was killed after being dragged by an alligator into a lake surrounding a Walt Disney World resort. According to employees with Disney, the company knew about the risk that alligators in the park posed to guests for quite some time before the tragedy.

Scientists want to diagnose CTE earlier

West Virginia residents may be glad to know that scientists have begun a major effort intended to diagnose chronic traumatic encephalopathy in people who are still alive. Currently, CTE can only be diagnosed by examining the brain tissue of deceased victims. Researchers hope to change this in order to more effectively treat the condition before it is too late.

Former astronaut charged after fatal crash

Some West Virginia residents may be unaware that 59-year-old James Halsell Jr., a former NASA astronaut, has been charged with murder following a fatal car accident in Alabama. The incident took place on June 6, and authorities say that speed and alcohol played a role in the crash. Halsell was released from custody after posting a $150,000 bail.

West Virginia court to hear negligence case

A woman filed a lawsuit in Mercer Circuit Court alleging that another driver's negligent behaviors led to injuries suffered in a car crash. In June 2014, the woman was driving west on Morrison Street in Princeton when she was rear ended by another vehicle. The plaintiff claimed that she was hit when she slowed to yield for another driver and the driver in the car behind her didn't stop.

Traffic fatalities and economic growth

Some West Virginia residents may have figured that the health of the nation's economy has a significant bearing on road safety. Road traffic accident injuries and fatalities fell in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis, but lower energy prices and consistent economic growth have since led to higher traffic levels and a sharp rise in the number of crashes. According to data from the National Safety Council, road fatalities were up by 14 percent and injuries were up by 30 percent between January and June 2015 compared with the first six months of 2014.

How the NFL could impact West Virginia TBI victims

According to a report released by a member of the House of Representatives, the NFL attempted to influence a study that would examine the link between brain injury and football. The league initially agreed to give $30 million to the National Institutes of Health, but it reneged on its promise after $16 million was to be given to a Boston University researcher who the NFL feared was biased against its interests.

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