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How recovery predictions can be made for brain injuries

In a number of our posts we have highlighted how different brain injuries must be diagnosed and treated differently. Essentially, physicians attempt to treat an injury based on physical, mental and emotional symptoms. Despite the universal treatment methods, people may recover differently from their injuries.

Take a football player for example. He may have suffered a concussion during a game and may be ready to come back by the next game. Another player who suffers a similar injury may not be able to play for a few months. Why would there be such a difference in how the two players recover? According to a University of Illinois study, the answer may reside in a single gene. 

Essentially, researchers studied the reaction of the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) gene and found that it could play a significant part in the formation of new neurons in the brain, which helps in the recovery from traumatic brain injuries. A BDNF gene has two polymorphisms in it. The researchers found that if a person has a particular combination of polymorphisms, it would signal that a person would be more sensitive to brain injuries compared to another person who has a different polymorphic combination.

Not only could this research be instructive in treating future TBI patients, it can be helpful in assessing damage awards in that it would help in estimating what a person would need in order to recover completely, and to assess whether a recovery is attainable at all.

If you have questions about your rights and options after a brain injury, an experienced personal injury attorney can help.

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