Articles Posted in Traumatic Brain Injury

Doe, who was born with the congenital heart defect tetralogy of Fallot, underwent surgery to repair the defect when he was an infant. Various echocardiograms during his childhood revealed a small hole in his atrial septum.

Tetralogy of Fallot is a congenital heart condition that involves four abnormalities occurring together, including a defective septum between the ventricles and narrowing of the pulmonary artery; it is accompanied by cyanosis.

At age 10, Doe underwent surgery to repair his pulmonary valve. Dr. Roe placed Doe on cardiopulmonary bypass but did not cross-clamp the aorta, which allowed air to pass from the right side of Doe’s heart through the atrial septal defect to the left side of Doe’s heart.
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Mr. Doe, a 59-year-old carpenter, suffered from myocarditis. He was placed on the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) heart transplant list.

Myocarditis is an inflammation of the heart muscle. The condition can affect the heart muscle and the heart’s electrical system, reducing the heart’s ability to pump. It can cause rapid or abnormal heart rhythms (arrythmias).

In many cases, myocarditis is caused by a viral infection. A severe case can weaken the heart, which can lead to heart failure, abnormal heart rate and sudden death. Under these circumstances, a heart transplant may be necessary.
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Ms. Doe, age 47, suffered from multiple sclerosis and used a walker. After she visited an urgent care clinic, she became tired and tried to sit down on her walker. The walker flipped over and Ms. Doe hit her head on the pavement.

A physician’s assistant at the clinic treated the injury and stitched Ms. Doe’s wound before discharging her with only verbal instructions.

Ms. Doe lapsed into a coma approximately five hours later. She was taken by ambulance to a nearby hospital where testing revealed a skull fracture and intracranial hemorrhage with midline shift.
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James DeGeorge, 84, was hospitalized for the placement of a pacemaker. He was labeled a high fall risk due to his unsteady gait and forgetfulness. A nurse gave him Ambien one evening as he reported he could not sleep. He was placed in a chair without an alarm.

An hour later, he was trying to get out of the chair but fell and hit his head. He suffered a subdural hematoma as a result of that blunt force. He died three weeks later and was survived by his wife and three adult children.

DeGeorge’s family and estate filed a lawsuit against the hospital for his wrongful death. The DeGeorge family asserted that the hospital chose not to take the necessary fall precautions and properly monitor his movements.
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Annually in the U.S., at least 3.5 million people are treated for traumatic brain injuries (TBI). A recent article published in the Journal of the American Medical Association’s neurology section reports that the development of therapies for TBI has been limited by the absence of diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers. The microtubule-associated protein Tau is an axonal phosphoprotein. Up to now, the presence of the protein in plasma from patients with acute TBI and chronic TBI has not been investigated.

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is considered an event and/or a disease. Traumatic brain injuries may lead to chronic functional, neurocognitive and neuropsychiatric deficits. The three classifications of a TBI are measured by severity, which can be mild, moderate or severe.

There were more than 3.5 million emergency department visits for TBI and more than 280,000 patients are hospitalized annually with TBI; most of these are classified as mild TBI. It is presumed that there are many more individuals who have mild TBI, but do not seek medical attention. Between 2000 and 2014, more than 300,000 members of the military sustained TBI during combat and training. Approximately half of the patients with TBI in the U.S. have at least some short-term disability related to that injury or illness. TBI is associated with an increased risk of neurodegenerative disorder such as Alzheimer’s disease, which can occur in individuals years after the injury.
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