Study: Traumatic Brain Injury Linked to Impulsive Behavior

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A recent study published in the Journal of Neurotrauma revealed a potential link between traumatic brain injury (TBI) and impulse control problems. The study, conducted by scientists at the University of British Columbia in Canada, found that even a slight brain injury can lead to a lack of impulse control in rats. The study’s lead scientist stated that his team’s findings will “have implications for how brain injury patients are treated and (how) their progress is measured.”

Causes of Traumatic Brain Injury

A traumatic brain injury can stem from several types of causes. An “open head” injury occurs if the skull is fractured enough to damage the brain, such as from a gunshot wound or blunt force trauma. These injuries are often focused at the point where the skull was penetrated. A “closed head” injury happens when the skull remains intact, but the brain sustains damage by rebounding against the skull, such as with sports injuries or motor vehicle accidents. These injuries can affect different parts of the brain, depending on the site and severity of the impact.

Symptoms of Traumatic Brain Injury

Some of the physical symptoms of traumatic brain injury can include headaches, diminished motor function, reduced reaction time, and sleep disorders. TBI can also carry numerous mental symptoms, including memory loss, mood swings, and diminished cognitive functions. Physicians have numerous methods to diagnose these symptoms, ranging from imaging tests such as X-rays, MRIs, and CAT scans, to tests geared toward measuring memory, reasoning, and emotional stability.

Traumatic Brain Injury and Impulse Control

The Canadian traumatic brain injury study found that rats who had sustained even slight injuries showed higher rates of impulsive behavior. The study also found that animals who suffered a mild traumatic brain injury continued to show signs of impulsive behavior for as much as eight weeks after the injury, even after they showed signs of restored memory and motor control. The study’s lead author wrote that doctors who are solely examining TBI patients based on memory or motor function “wouldn’t notice that the patient is still being affected by the injury in terms of impulsivity.”

Traumatic Brain Injury and Addiction

The results of the study may also help scientists examine the links between traumatic brain injury and addiction. Researchers have been examining the ties between addiction and impulse control. The results of the Canadian study may help scientists develop treatments that curb impulsive behavior, which can reduce or eliminate the impulses and addict experiences as they engage in their particular addictions.

Sources:
Technology Networks, KTUU-TV

Know Your Rights in a Traumatic Brain Injury Lawsuit

The professional staff and experienced attorneys at The Flowers Law Firm stand ready to offer legal advice for victims of traumatic brain injury and their families. Our record of success and our list of satisfied clients shows that we work hard to protect the rights of East Texas residents. Call or email us today to schedule a consultation on your traumatic brain injury lawsuit, and we will be happy to discuss the details of your case.

NOTE: This post is a news story and does not imply an endorsement of the Flowers Law Firm by any of the parties mentioned herein.

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