MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Robert Ross, Ph.D.
McConnell Hall, Room 424
University of New Hampshire
MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?
Response: In the United States, 1.5-2 million people suffer from mild traumatic brain injuries, more commonly referred to as concussions, per year.
There is a large body of work illustrating the cognitive impairments associated with concussions in the immediate aftermath of the concussive event. However, it is not clear whether concussions can change cognition more long-term and how concussions might change how the brain functions during specific types of cognition.
In our study, we examined executive function, which is a cognitive process that helps control or manage other cognitive functions, in a group of healthy young adults aged 18-24 that had suffered at least two concussions and compared their performance and their brain oscillations to a group that had not suffered any concussions. Brain oscillations help the brain coordinate the activity of the thousands of neurons necessary for any sort of cognitive process to occur. The participants in the study self-reported their concussions with all concussions occurring at least one month prior to participating in the experiment.