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Navigation: SOS Sisson > Traumatic Injury Blog
Jack Sisson's TBI Blog
A hug is duct tape for the soul.
Tuesday, August 30, 2011
Test Your Memory for Alzheimer's Disease in Five Minutes
From The Alzheimer's Reading Room:
Sunday, August 28, 2011
'Dear Mr. President:' A Letter from America's Dementia Patients
Dear Mr. President,
Please appoint a champion of non-pharmacological Alzheimer's treatment to the National Advisory Panel on Alzheimer's that you recently established pursuant to the National Alzheimer's Project Act.
Current medications can slow the advance of Alzheimer's disease in some people, but offer no hope of a cure for the estimated 5.5 million people with Alzheimer's or other dementias in the U.S. today, for the many millions more who will soon receive an early diagnosis of dementia, or for the even greater number of people who love and care for them.
Mr. President, like most Americans, you probably know and love someone with dementia and you undoubtedly want a cure to be found for this horrible disease. But do you know that if a drug were discovered today it will not improve the lives of those with dementia now or of those who will soon develop it?
Drug development for dementia has hit a brick wall. The National Institutes of Health Consensus report states: "Currently, no evidence of even moderate scientific quality exists to support the association of any modifiable factor (such as nutritional supplements, herbal preparations, dietary factors, prescription or nonprescription drugs, social or economic factors, medical conditions, toxins, or environmental exposures) with reduced risk of Alzheimer's disease."
Here is the link to sign the petition to have a champion of nonpharmacological treatments for Alzheimer's appointed to the National Advisory Panel on Alzheimer's of the National Alzheimer's Project Act.
Friday, August 26, 2011
From ABC News:
Currently, there’s no foolproof way to ‘see’ damage from a concussion. To give doctors a head’s up, researchers are testing a headband device that works like a scaled-down brainwave reader, and may pinpoint patients who have sustained a concussion.
It’s important for an athlete who has had a concussion to temporarily refrain from playing sports or other activities that could lead to another head injury. Research shows that the effects of successive or multiple head injuries can be cumulative and cause potentially serious, permanent brain damage.Coaches and trainers should know how to spot signs of a concussion in an athlete and, if necessary, send the player for an evaluation and medical clearance before allowing him/her to return to play. However, Jeffrey Bazarian, M.D., M.P.H., Emergency Physician with the University of Rochester Medical Center in Rochester, NY, says it’s often difficult to determine the extent of brain injury because some patients appear to be fine, but still have impaired function.
Bazarian is undertaking a study to test a concussion-detecting device from a company called, BrainScope™. The BrainScope device uses EEG technology to study brain waves of patients suspected of having a concussion. A headband with eight electrodes is placed over the forehead and temples. The electrodes detect and record brain wave activity and send the information to a handheld computer device. The computer analyzes the data and lets the physician know if the brain wave activity is within normal parameters. Bazarian says the auto-evaluation is important because emergency room physicians are not trained to read the results of an EEG and finding a neurologist to translate the readings takes extra time
Wednesday, August 24, 2011
Construction Industry Leads in TBI Fatalities
From The American Journal of Preventive Medicine:
Although traumatic brain injury (TBI) is one of the leading causes of death and disability in the U.S., work-related TBI has not been well documented.
Fatality rates were 15 times higher in men compared with women. Workers aged 65 years or older experienced the highest TBI fatality rate of all age groups (2.5 per 100,000 per year). Construction, transportation, and agriculture/forestry/fishing industries recorded nearly half of all TBI fatalities . Occupational TBI death rates declined 23% over the 6-year period.
ConclusionsGo here to register at site or to purchase the complete article.
Tuesday, August 23, 2011
Pat Summitt, Tennessee women’s basketball coach, diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease
From The Washington Post:
Pat Summitt’s doctors are lucky they are still standing. When the first neurologist told her she had symptoms of early-onset Alzheimer’s disease, she almost dropped him with one punch. When a second one advised her to retire immediately, she said, “Do you have any idea who you’re dealing with?”
Three months ago, Summitt, 59, the blaze-eyed, clench-fisted University of Tennessee women’s basketball coach who has won more games than any other college coach ever, men’s or women’s, visited the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. seeking an explanation for a troubling series of memory lapses over the past year. A woman who was always highly organized had to ask repeatedly what time a team meeting was scheduled for. “She lost her keys three times a day instead of once,” her son Tyler says. She was late to practice. On occasion, she simply stayed in bed.
“Are you having trouble with your memory?” friends began asking, puzzled.
“Sometimes I draw blanks,” Summitt finally admitted.
Her first clue that something was badly wrong came last season, when she drew a blank on what offensive set to call in the heat of a game.
“I just felt something was different,” she says. “And at the time I didn’t know what I was dealing with. Until I went to Mayo, I couldn’t know for sure. But I can remember trying to coach and trying to figure out schemes and whatever and it just wasn’t coming to me, like, I would typically say, ‘We’re gonna do this, and run that.’ And it probably caused me to second-guess.”
Summitt believed her symptoms were the side effects of a powerful medication she was taking for rheumatoid arthritis, an excruciating condition that she has quietly suffered with since 2006. Instead, when Summitt received her test results from the Mayo Clinic at the end of May, they confirmed a shocking worst-case scenario: She showed “mild” but distinct signs of “early-onset dementia, Alzheimer’s type,” the irreversible brain disease that destroys recall and cognitive abilities over time, and that afflicts an estimated 5 million Americans.Continue reading.
Monday, August 22, 2011
10 Ways to Alter Your Brain
From The Huffington Post:
Continue reading to find out how these activities can help your brain.
Sunday, August 21, 2011
Traumatic Brain Injury Increases Parkinson’s Risk
Traumatic brain injuries are known to trigger a variety of symptoms ranging from a simple headache to permanent memory and thinking problems. Now scientists at UCLA have discovered that a traumatic brain injury can result in the loss of a specific type of neuron, elevating the risk for Parkinson’s disease as well.
Saturday, August 20, 2011
Music therapy could benefit dementia and Parkinson’s disease sufferers
From Home Care Assistance Vancouver Blog:
It’s been said that music is food for the soul, but recent studies have shown that it could be beneficial for your body and mind as well. Research done by Petr Janata, Associate Professor of Psychology, at the University of California found that the parts of the brain that that best responded to music “[stayed] healthier in Alzheimer’s patients longer than the other brain parts and [had] the capacity for emotions and other sensations.”
What this means is that music could potentially help stimulate Alzheimer’s sufferers no matter the stage of their condition. Listening to music evokes memories of childhood and youth, and serves to relax and soothe patients as well. In addition, music also helps with coordination and stimulation in Parkinson’s disease patients.Play classical music to begin the calming process (but keep it to under an hour; patients were observed to become agitated past that), and sing and play instruments with your elder loved one. It won’t just help with motor functions and brain activity, but it’ll give you some quality time with them as well.
Friday, August 19, 2011
Moderate alcohol use may reduce dementia, cognitive damage: study
From The Los Angeles Times:
Wednesday, August 17, 2011
Dementia -- What is it and how do we get it?
I believe we told you that Jack's Parkinson's diagnosis was an error. He does NOT have Parkinson's. What he HAS been diagnosed with is Dementia, and quite naturally he wants to learn everything possible about it. We will continue to post about Parkinson's from time to time, but our main emphasis will remain Traumatic Brain Injury with the addition of Dementia.
From PubMed Health:
Dementia is a loss of brain function that occurs with certain diseases. It affects memory, thinking, language, judgment, and behavior.
A little education is always good for you
Jack enjoyed this email he received a few days ago and hopes you do, too.
Q: Why are many coin banks shaped like pigs? A: Long ago, dishes and cookware in were made of a dense orange clay called 'pygg'. When people saved coins in jars made of this clay, the jars became known as 'pygg banks.' When an English potter misunderstood the word, he made a bank that resembled a pig. And it caught on.
Q: Did you ever wonder why dimes, quarters and half dollars have notches, while pennies and nickels do not?
A: The US Mint began putting notches on the edges of coins containing gold and silver to discourage holders from shaving off small quantities of the precious metals. Dimes, quarters and half dollars are notched because they used to contain silver. Pennies and nickels aren't notched because the metals they contain are not valuable enough to shave.
Q: Why do men's clothes have buttons on the right while women's clothes have buttons on the left?
A: When buttons were invented, they were very expensive and worn primarily by the rich. Because wealthy women were dressed by maids, dressmakers put the buttons on the maid's right! Since most people are right-handed, it is easier to push buttons on the right through holes on the left. And that's where women's buttons have remained since.
Q: Why do X's at the end of a letter signify kisses?
A: In the Middle Ages, when many people were unable to read or write,documents were often signed using an X. Kissing the X represented an oath to fulfill obligations specified in the document. The X and the kiss eventually became synonymous.
Q: Why is shifting responsibility to someone else called 'passing the buck'?
A: In card games, it was once customary to pass an item, called a buck, from player to player to indicate whose turn it was to deal. If a player did not wish to assume the responsibility, he would 'pass the buck' to the next player.
Q: Why do people clink their glasses before drinking a toast?
A: It used to be common for someone to try to kill an enemy by offering him a poisoned drink. To prove to a guest that a drink was safe, it became customary for a guest to pour a small amount of his drink into the glass of the host. Both men would drink it simultaneously. When a guest trusted his host, he would then just touch or clink the host's glass with his own.
Q: Why are people in the public eye said to be 'in the limelight'?
A: Invented in 1825, limelight was used in lighthouses and stage lighting by burning a cylinder of lime which produced a brilliant light. In the theater, performers on stage 'in the limelight' were seen by the audience to be the center of attention.
Q: Why do ships and aircraft in trouble use 'mayday' as their call for help?
A: This comes from the French word m'aidez - meaning 'help me' –and is pronounced 'mayday.'
Q: Why is someone who is feeling great 'on cloud nine'?
A: Types of clouds are numbered according to the altitudes they attain, with nine being the highest cloud. If someone is said to be on cloud nine, that person is floating well above worldly cares.
Q: Why are zero scores in tennis called 'love'?
A: In , where tennis first became popular, a big, round zero on the scoreboard looked like an egg and was called 'l'oeuf,' which is French for 'egg.' When tennis was introduced in the U.S. , Americans pronounced it 'love.'
Q: In golf, where did the term 'Caddie' come from?
A: When Mary, later Queen of Scots, went to France as a young girl (for education & survival), Louis, King of France, learned that she loved the Scot game 'golf.' So he had the first golf course outside of built for her enjoyment. To make sure she was properly chaperoned (and guarded) while she played, Louis hired cadets from a military school to accompany her. Mary liked this a lot and when she returned to (not a very good idea in the long run), she took the practice with her. In French, the word cadet is pronounced 'ca-day' and the Scots changed it into 'caddie.'
Now YOU know just about everything!
Monday, August 15, 2011
Types of TBI Treatment Centers
This is from Traumatic Brain Injury.com:
Read at original source.
Saturday, August 13, 2011
Accidents a Common Cause of Traumatic Brain Injury
Although this article is really a press release from a personal injury law firm, it still offers some good basic information and sound advice about traumatic brain injuries. Particularly helpful is the section on seeking an attorney. If you or someone you love suffers a traumatic brain injury, you should be aware of the economic toll such an injury can take ($600,000 to $1.8 million for lifetime expenses), and if the accident was someone else's fault, then hopefully their insurance company will provide financial compensation to help with medical bills, rehabilitation, loss of wages, and perhaps pain and suffering.
From U.S. Politics Today:
Every year, an estimated 1.7 million Americans suffer a traumatic brain injury ("TBI"). Fortunately, three quarters of TBIs are relatively minor. Even so, TBI is to blame for over 50,000 deaths annually, and some five million people currently live with TBI related disabilities. Knowing more about TBI and its causes can be beneficial for anyone whose life has been touched by a severe head injury.Read entire article.
Friday, August 12, 2011
Foundation helps teens suffering from traumatic brain injury
What a great idea! Read how one woman created a foundation to help brain-injured teens in a unique, fun way.
From the Key Biscayne Times:
Thursday, August 11, 2011
Little Girl Can't Stop Giggling After Brain Surgery
From ABC News:
Here's more on Pseudobulbar Affect.
Wednesday, August 10, 2011
Light box could be breakthrough in treatment of brain injury fatigue
From the Melbourne Weekly:
SITTING in front of a light box for 45 minutes a day is a promising treatment to reduce fatigue in patients with traumatic brain injuries, researchers have shown.
Monday, August 08, 2011
Tackling sports concussion laws head on
From The Houston Chronicle:
We encourage our children to play sports. As parents, we expect bumps and bruises, not a life-threatening head injury. Sports-related concussions continue to be reported at an alarming rate. According to the Centers for Disease Control, traumatic brain injuries occur frequently in contact sports. What's more, these injuries are now second only to car accidents among people aged 15 to 24. New laws are in place to protect our young athletes. Still, they may not be enough to keep them on the sidelines.
With the passage of House Bill 2038, school districts will now be required to have concussion oversight teams, composed of a doctor and at least one trained professional in the area of sports concussions. These oversight teams make the call on whether a student can return to play following a head injury. One requirement: Youth athletes must get written medical clearance before they can return to play. What's more, new University Interscholastic League rules that take effect this month will not allow athletes to return for at least one day. Players used to be allowed back onto the field after 15 minutes of not showing concussive symptoms.
While HB 2038 is being dubbed the most comprehensive and detailed in the nation, the law does not scrutinize the issue of written medical clearance. Getting a note from a health care professional to return to play is not the same as recommending an athlete who suffers a concussion be seen by a specialist. This includes a doctor who specializes in treating concussions or a medical doctor with training in concussion management. That's the recommendation of the American Academy of Neurologists, the largest association of doctors who treat the brain and nervous system. Concussions are often difficult to diagnose and do not always show up on CT scans or MRIs. Identifying concussions requires extensive knowledge.
There has been some debate about whether baseline testing could be costly, ranging from $3 per athlete assessment and $10 to $15 for post concussive testing. Find the money. We are talking about our children's safety.
Read at the original source.
Saturday, August 06, 2011
Giving care to the caregivers
From San Diego's North County Times:
I don't think I've ever seen anyone so happy to receive a check in the mail as "Ann Norris," who asked me not to use her real name to protect her privacy.Read at the original source.
Friday, August 05, 2011
Sports-related Brain Injury Linked with Brain Disease
From Philadelphia Magazine:
Researchers examined brain tissue of former athletes and found that traumatic brain injury can lead to an Alzheimer's-like disease later in life.
About this time every year, as high school football season gears up, we start hearing stories about the health risks associated with contact sports—especially when it comes to kids. There’s good reason: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that each year emergency rooms see an estimated 135,000 sports-related concussion cases in kids ages 5 to 18.Keep reading.
Wednesday, August 03, 2011
Magnets Wake Up Coma Patients
From Central Florida's WFTV.com:
Comas typically only last a few weeks, and most people do come out of comas, but whether they can return to a functioning life is the question. Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) may help with this problem. TMS could help the more than 300,000 soldiers who have returned from Iraq and Afghanistan with brain injuries.WHAT IS IT?: TMS uses strong magnetic fields to induce or inhibit electrical activity in brain neurons, therefore either turning off or stimulating parts of the brain. TMS activates different areas of the brain depending on the severity of the coma. When one is in a coma, it can be caused by several factors, but damage to the brain is often seen. When in a coma, the brain is at its lowest functioning level. TMS stimulates a damaged brain so that it functions more.
Monday, August 01, 2011
Traumatic Brain Injury A Higher Risk For Girls Than Boys
Here's something surprising, at least it was to me.
Read the entire article.
LinksTBI Film Reviews
TBI Book Reviews
Traumatic Brain Injury Law Blog
SoapBlox/Chicago: Protecting Our Troops
Head Injury Survival Journal
Losing the Physical Self
Tower of Hanoi: Instructions for this popular puzzle can be viewed simply by clicking the Instructions button on that page.
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