Science continues to uncover new information about the long-term effects of concussions. Recently, research concluded that those with mild traumatic brain injuries (mTBI) are at higher risk of developing Parkinson's Disease. Their findings suggest that Delaware residents who have had such a brain injury should be on the lookout for signs of this neurodegenerative disease.
The research was conducted through a sample of U.S. veterans using the Veterans Health Administration database. Through the database, researchers took a sample of 182,634 and tracked the rate of Parkinson's Disease in those with and without mTBI. In the end, they found those with a history of brain injuries to have over 50% higher risk of developing Parkinson's Disease. Of those who ended up with the disease, 65 percent had a mTBI earlier in their lives.
Scientists attribute this correlation with the protein alpha-synuclien. This protein is more expressed in the brain following an injury. While it is unclear why the brain reacts this way, it is known that the accumulation of alpha-synuclien can form Lewy bodies, which, in turn, can lead to degradation of the brain's neurons creating Parkinson's Disease.
It is important for people who have had a mild traumatic brain injury to understand both the immediate effects and long-term risks. This is especially true when an injury is sustained in a car accident or another insured location, or if the brain injury victim is not liable and can collect damages. Understanding the true cost of brain injuries is important for people looking to get the restitution they need for the impacts of the injury. Those looking to better understand this legal process under Delaware law should work with a lawyer in the state.
Source: Psychology Today, "Mild Traumatic Brain Injury Increases Risk of Parkinson's", E. Paul Zehr Ph.D., May 25, 2018