Researchers at McMaster University in Canada have found evidence supporting the belief that inflammation is an underlying factor facilitating symptoms of traumatic brain injuries.
The study, published in Brain, Behavior, and Immunity, may help explain why those with mild brain injuries, or even injury to other parts of the body, experience from significant post-concussion-like symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, and cognitive impairment.
According to the findings, individuals with a specific genetic change related to a certain inflammatory protein are particularly likely to have a poorer and more prolonged recovery from brain injury.
“Rather than a concussion, we’d like to propose a unifying umbrella term of post-inflammatory brain syndromes or PIBS,” said Michel Rathbone, M.D., Ph.D., professor of medicine for McMaster’s Michael DeGroote School of Medicine and a lead author of the study.
He continues to suggest that the new findings will encourage researchers to explore new lines of research into post-concussion symptoms so that physicians may be able to treat post-concussion-like symptoms even when there is no obvious brain injury.
The author concluded the results may also provide hope for individuals suffering from cognitive dysfunction after major injuries or trauma, as they may benefit from similar treatments as those with brain injuries.
“This research opens many doors for so many different patients. We are excited to be starting a totally new approach to the field, and we look forward to making a difference for the patients of the future.”