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New Therapeutic Technique for Traumatic Brain Injury


New Therapeutic Technique for Traumatic Brain Injury

I’m Ed Smith, a Thousand Oaks brain injury lawyer. Traumatic brain injury is a serious injury that may result in life-altering consequences. Researchers in New York and Texas have discovered a new technique for minimizing the extent of damage to the brain. Having seen the degree to which brain injury affects a victim of motor vehicle crashes as well as other accidents, I join in the hope that this will be a useful tool in helping TBI-afflicted individuals.

The Discovery

Researchers with the Feinstein Institute of the Hofstra Northwell School of Medicine in New York and a research institute in Houston,Texas, have found that stimulating a facial nerve helps to prevent some of the secondary damage that is precipitated after traumatic brain injury. They discovered that such stimulation on animals afflicted with TBI increased the amount of oxygen in their brain by increasing the flow of blood in the cerebral artery.

These researchers used electrical stimulation of the trigeminal nerve, a large cranial nerve that provides sensory input to the face and motor function such as chewing and biting. In rats, this stimulation resulted in increased blood pressure and increased cerebral artery flow to their brain. This treatment resulted in an increase of oxygen level in the brain. In addition, brain edema was decreased as was the extent of disruption of the blood brain barrier and the volume of the damaged area.

Researchers also reported that the electrical stimulation prevented latent problems associated with TBI. Since, as of this date, pharmaceutical intervention into TBI is unavailable, the head of neurosurgical services at Northwell said that using new therapeutic techniques represents an urgent need. Electrical stimulation of the trigeminal nerve may prove to be an effective technique to protect the brain after traumatic brain injury.

What Is Secondary Brain Damage Following TBI?

Secondary brain damage occurs in the hours, days and weeks following the primary injury. It influences the total damage from a TBI. In fact, 40 percent of all individuals with TBI deteriorate in a hospital.

The damage resulting from a primary impact injury may be cerebral hypoxia, a lack of oxygen to the brain, edema or swelling of the brain, falling blood pressure with concomitant lack of blood flow and increased intracranial blood pressure. The latter can result in brain herniation, which is deadly. Additional secondary features are: increased carbon dioxide in the blood (hypercapnia) and acidosis or an increased blood acidity. In some cases, neurons can stop communicating with one another due to changes in neurotransmitters, which are chemicals used in communication between neural cells.

The blood brain barrier, a membranous structure the body uses to keep harmful or infectious substances from it’s brain, can deteriorate. This can result in neurotoxicity and infection.

The use of electrical stimulation to a brain focuses on reducing issues related to a lack of blood flow into the brain. Brain hypoxia is one of the most significant secondary issues associated with TBI.

Thousand Oaks Brain Injury Lawyer

I’m Ed Smith, a Thousand Oaks brain injury lawyer. If you or a member of your family has suffered a brain injury because of the negligent actions of another, please phone me at (805) 372-0200 or (800) 404-5400. My free and friendly advice is just a phone call away.

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It has been my privilege to have served the people of Thousand Oaks and the surrounding area as an injury lawyer since 1982, helping many who have suffered traumatic injuries and wrongful deaths in obtaining compensation.

As a member from California of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, I belong to a group of like members who have settled cases or won verdicts of $1 million or over for clients.

Information on prior cases by a law firm and what the outcomes were can be valuable to an injury victim looking for experienced representation. You are welcome to view some of our prior cases and their resolutions at Verdicts and Settlements.

As owner/founder of, my website offers comprehensive information on many types of personal injuries that visitors may find useful.

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