New study reveals the connection between dementia and TBIs

A new study discovered that people over the age of 55 who incur a traumatic brain injury are at a higher risk for dementia.

According to a recent study, older people who incur a brain injury are more likely to eventually develop the symptoms of dementia. To come to this conclusion, Medical News Today states that researchers gathered data from a medical database and studied the records of over 150,000 patients over the age of 55 who were recently diagnosed with traumatic brain injuries or with fractures that occurred somewhere other than the head or the neck, otherwise known as non-TBI body trauma.

Of those patients who suffered from a TBI, approximately 8.4 percent developed dementia. In comparison, only 5.9 percent of those diagnosed with a NTT developed the disease. Additionally, this study found that those who incurred a TBI developed dementia sooner after the initial trauma than those who were diagnosed with a NTT.

What is dementia?

Dementia is a group of symptoms that results in the loss of certain mental functions, states WebMD. For instance, those suffering from dementia may struggle with their ability to reason, think and remember; they may also experience changes in their behavior, mood and personality.

In some situations, the symptoms of dementia can be treated and cured if they develop due to a treatable cause. For instance, if the dementia is caused by a substance abuse problem, the symptoms can be managed using certain medications. However, if the dementia is brought on by an untreatable cause, like a brain injury, it cannot be cured.

Brain injury effects vary

Dementia is just one of the many symptom and consequences brain injuries victims may experience. In addition to an increased risk of dementia, those who incur a TBI may develop symptoms that affect their physical, mental and emotional capabilities. For instance, according to the Brain Injury Association of America, a person who incurs an injury to the left side of his or her brain may suffer from the following effects:

  • Trouble understanding what others are saying and difficulties with verbal output
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Limited control over moments that occur on the right side of the body
  • Problems with sequencing and with logic

However, the effects experienced by one brain injury victim will vary greatly from those of another person who incurs the same type of injury. The BIAA states that every TBI is different and the effects often depend on the severity, location and cause of the trauma.

Those who incur a TBI may struggle with catastrophic effects that impair their ability to live a normal life. If you or a family member has sustained a brain injury due to the negligence of another person, consult with an attorney to find out what your legal rights are and what possible compensation may be available to you.

Keywords: traumatic brain injury