Biomarkers Used in the Diagnosis of a Traumatic Brain Injury

Biomarkers Used in the Diagnosis of a Traumatic Brain Injury

Biomarkers Used in the Diagnosis of a Traumatic Brain Injury

Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) are some of the most devastating injuries that someone can experience. There are lots of possible causes, which include:

  • Sports, such as football, soccer, and basketball
  • Traumatic accidents, such as auto accidents and motorcycle accidents
  • Assault, including blunt and penetrating trauma

Traumatic brain injuries have the potential to cause serious complications for an individual. They could lose the ability to walk, talk, or even feed themselves. Some of the statistics regarding traumatic brain injuries which have been published by the United States Department of Health include:

  • There are more than 2.5 million visits to emergency departments in the United States every year due to head injuries
  • Close to 800 people are hospitalized every day for an injury to their head or brain
  • More than 55,000 people die of a traumatic brain injury every year
  • Toddlers, adolescents, and the elderly are the most likely people to suffer a traumatic brain injury
  • Falls are the most common reason that someone sustains a head or brain injury

Clearly, head and brain injuries have the potential to cause serious consequences. Over the past few decades, a significant amount of research has been done to try and find new ways to diagnose and treat these injuries. Recently, a research paper was published that discussed a new biomarker that could be used to diagnose a traumatic brain injury.

A New Biomarker for the Diagnosis of a Traumatic Brain Injury

Recently, a study was published that analyzed the possibility of using a new biomarker in the diagnosis of a traumatic brain injury. With this type of trauma, speed means everything. Every second that is lost could allow more brain tissue to become damaged. Therefore, looking for new targets that can be tested for in the diagnosis of a head injury is essential. A team of researchers that have been conducting studies at the UCLA School of Medicine believe that they may have identified a potential target that could serve this purpose.

The Potential to Use LPA as a Biomarker of Brain Damage

The findings from their study, published in The American Journal of Pathology, offer hope that a new type of blood test could be developed. The molecule is called lysophosphatidic acid (LPA). In the study, researchers looked at animals who had suffered some form of a head injury. The animals that suffered damage had significantly elevated levels of LPA in their blood. Moreover, the researchers were able to use LPA levels to localize where in the brain the damage had taken place. Areas of the brain that had suffered cell death and nerve damage had higher levels of LPA.

If a blood test can be developed to localize a traumatic brain injury quickly, individuals with brain damage can receive treatment faster. Those that require surgery may be taken to an operating room more quickly. Quicker treatments may translate into preserved brain tissue and, hopefully, improved outcomes. Even though it is still in the early stages of research, LPA could prove to be the future of traumatic brain injury diagnosis and treatment.

Someone who has sustained head trauma of any kind should be evaluated quickly for a possible traumatic brain injury. After receiving medical care, it is a good idea to meet with a South Sacramento Brain Injury Lawyer. The circumstances of the injury should be reviewed in detail because you and your family may be entitled to financial compensation.

Related Articles by Ed Smith

South Sacramento Brain Injury Lawyer

I’m Ed Smith, a South Sacramento Brain Injury Lawyer. All traumatic brain injuries should be taken seriously. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, contact me for free, friendly advice at (916) 921-6400 or (800) 404-5400.

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