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Brain Injury

SCIENCE
February 17, 2014 | By Melissa Healy
Here's a novel idea, given that American parents send almost 4 million of their children out to play tackle football every year, despite mounting concerns about youth concussions: Maybe the helmets their kids wear should be tested and ranked on how well they prevent concussion. A study to be presented at a meeting of the American Academy of Neurology attempts to do exactly that, comparing 10 of the most widely used football helmets in drop tests designed to measure the kinds of forces that are most likely to result in concussion.
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HEALTH
May 5, 2012 | By James S. Fell, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Montel Williams is not your typical pot-smoking snowboarder. Best known as an Emmy-winning talk show host, the former Marine and decorated naval intelligence officer was also a champion boxer, bodybuilder and power-lifter. In 1999, Williams was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, and it hit him hard. After a downward slide to rock bottom, Williams decided to get his life back. Were you active in your younger years? I was extremely active. I was a martial artist. I played every sport: track, football, basketball.
SCIENCE
February 26, 2014 | By Melissa Healy
A screening test for concussion that can be performed quickly on the sidelines was able to detect mild traumatic brain injury in about 4 in 5 college athletes who had sustained a concussion, a forthcoming study has found. The King-Devick test capitalizes on a subtle but important symptom of brain injury: a disruption in the eyes' ability to travel smoothly across a page, and to shift direction upon the brain's command. In a new study conducted on male and female athletes at the University of Florida, most subjects who took the King-Devick test soon after suffering a concussion showed reductions in speed and accuracy that were marked enough to reveal mild traumatic brain injury.
SCIENCE
October 10, 2013 | By Melissa Healy, This post has been corrected. See note at bottom for details.
Albert Einstein had a colossal corpus callosum. And when it comes to this particular piece of neural real estate, it's pretty clear that size matters. Chances are, that brawny bundle of white matter cleaving the Swiss physicist's brain from front to back is part of what made his mind so phenomenally creative. The corpus callosum carries electrical signals between the brain's right hemisphere and its left. Stretching nearly the full length of the brain from behind the forehead to the nape of the neck, the corpus callosum is the dense network of neural fibers that make brain regions with very different functions work together.
SPORTS
July 9, 2012 | Bill Dwyre
It has been five months since a 22-year-old driver ran a red light, plowed through a crosswalk in the early-morning hours in Austin, Texas, and knocked the world of the Dave Doniak family off its axis. Most severely injured of the three young people struck that night of Feb. 3 was Kylie Doniak. Her pain was immediately felt in Chino Hills. Still is. The story of Kylie Doniak is better known in Texas than here. She went from Ayala High School in Chino Hills to become a star player on the Longhorns women's soccer team, a second-team All-Big 12 choice a couple of times and a first-team All-Academic Big 12 athlete three years.
SCIENCE
June 27, 2013 | By Melissa Healy
In the wake of a traumatic brain injury, a victim may have more to worry about than lingering headaches, dizziness or inability to concentrate: A new study finds that the risk of ischemic stroke -- in which blood flow to the brain is blocked or reduced -- rises in the years that follow. That finding, published this week in the journal Neurology, may help explain the incidence of stroke in patients under 65 and in patients without some of stroke's known risk factors, such as hypertension, Type 2 diabetes or atrial fibrillation.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 10, 2012 | BETSY SHARKEY, FILM CRITIC
When a movie calls itself "The Vow," you know it takes its love and its relationships seriously. And that's certainly the case with the new romantically and medically challenged weepie starring Rachel McAdams and Channing Tatum. Despite the sweet story -- lovely couple, car wreck, brain injury, she forgets him, he loves her anyway -- and the beautiful scenery -- cool converted warehouse spaces, snowy Chicago streets, Lake Michigan in the moonlight, and of course Tatum and McAdams -- this is a movie that leaves you wanting more.
NEWS
March 12, 2013 | By Melissa Healy
Even a single concussion appears to cause changes in the structure of the brain that may make cognitive problems and depression a higher likelihood, a new study has found. The study, which used magnetic resonance imaging to compare healthy subjects' brains with those of patients a year after a mild traumatic brain injury, indicated that those with such injuries had shrinkage in brain regions that are key to memory, executive function and mood regulation. The study, published online in the journal Radiology on Tuesday, is the first to show that even a single concussion can leave measurable scars on the brain.
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