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.
CTE is a degenerative disease of the brain that is caused by repeated blows to the head. It is most prominently found in football players, and at least half of those whose brains will be studied are indeed former members of the NFL. By learning to detect CTE early in its progression, scientists believe that it may be possible to stop the condition's evolution before its symptoms prove unrecoverable.
The study's 240 participants will be monitored for three years to detect neurological, biometric and psychiatric changes that are associated with this form of brain injury. Since CTE is known to be affected by an accumulation of certain abnormal chemical alterations in the brain, tracking the lives of these participants may help to learn more about the specific physiological operations behind CTE. While it is understood that CTE is caused by blows to the head, it is unknown whether its effects can be mitigated or even reversed if caught sufficiently in advance.
Brain injuries can be some of the most difficult for doctors to treat. Someone who has suffered a brain injury due to the negligence of another person or party may want to have the assistance of an attorney in seeking compensation for medical expenses and other losses that have been incurred.