Scientists inquire into causes of brain injury

Concussions can be severe and even life-changing for people in West Virginia injured while playing sports, driving a car or going about their business. Concussions and other forms of brain injury can develop after a hard impact to the head; while this fact is well-known, it remains unclear how exactly to prevent concussions or identify particular types of hits that are more likely to lead to serious injury. Researchers have pursued a deeper inquiry into the problem, making use of computer simulations of the human brain and data obtained from observation of football players.

The corpus callosum is a small area of the brain; when conducting their research, the scientists found that traumatic brain injury and concussion were more likely to occur when this area moves more strongly after an impact than the rest of the brain. However, as the human brain is highly complex, it was difficult to identify any particular relationship between one type of head injury or another and the resulting internal injuries. They urged more study of the mechanics and biology of the brain as key to developing greater knowledge of how to treat or prevent brain injury.

The researchers made use of data that had been obtained by fitting 31 college football players with special mouthguards; these measured the movements of players' heads after undergoing any type of impact. In some cases, hits led to concussions, while in other cases, there was no clear injury. The data showed that the asynchronous, fast movements of the corpus callosum distinguished the head injuries that were more likely to cause concussions.

A concussion or other forms of traumatic brain injury can have serious effects on a person's health and life. People who have a head injury due to another's negligent or dangerous behavior may benefit from working with a personal injury lawyer. An attorney may be able to help injured people to seek compensation for their damages.

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