Concussion: Gray Matter Abnormalities vs Self-Reported Symptoms

Dr. Andrew R.  Mayer, PhD The Mind Research Network Lovelace Biomedical and Environmental Research Interview with:
Dr. Andrew R.  Mayer, PhD

The Mind Research Network Lovelace Biomedical and Environmental Research Institute What are the main findings of the study?

Dr. Mayer:

a)     Just because mTBI patients self-report reduced and/or no post-concussive symptoms does not mean that they have completed the healing process.
b)     Current gold-standards in the clinical world (CT scans and self-report) may not be accurately capturing brain health after injury.
c)     Diffusion imaging shows promise for being a more sensitive biomarker for measuring recovery than currently used techniques. Were any of the findings unexpected?

Dr. Mayer:  No. We have observed similar findings previously in both adult and pediatric patients. What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?

Dr. Mayer:  The field only has a preliminary understanding of the pathophysiological effects of mTBI/concussion and the subsequent recovery from these injuries. More work is needed to develop objective bio-markers about when it is truly safe to return to physical activities. What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Dr. Mayer:  The current results are based on small sample (50 mTBI patients) and need to be replicated in an independent study. Objective characterization of concussion is a must for the field to move forward.


A prospective study of gray matter abnormalities in mild traumatic brain injury

Josef M. Ling, BA, Stefan Klimaj, BA, Trent Toulouse, PhD and Andrew R. Mayer, PhD
Published online before print November 20, 2013, doi: 10.1212/01.wnl.0000437302.36064.b1 Neurology

Last Updated on November 23, 2013 by Marie Benz MD FAAD