Scientists and medical professionals have long been trying to find ways to determine how severe a brain injury is in order to treat it correctly. Unfortunately, this can be challenging, and without diagnostic tools to tell them how injured a person’s brain is, doctors often do not take the correct treatment steps. However, a new option might be able to step in and make sense of this problem.
The Study Came as a Result of Soldiers Injured in Iraq and Afghanistan
In the last ten years, many soldiers have come home from Iraq or Afghanistan with some level of traumatic brain injury. These were caused by the soldiers being exposed to extremely loud noises, such as explosions, on a near-constant basis. The sound and shockwaves from IEDs can result in severe headaches, memory loss, and other issues for soldiers.
This Issue Has Only Been Studied by the DOD Since 2007
Prior to 2007, the United States Department of Defense (DOD) spent nearly zero dollars investigating traumatic head trauma. At that point, they realized that these injuries were much more common than they had thought and that they were very complex. Since then, they have been spending a lot of money to study the gaps in understanding to find solutions to the symptoms of these injuries.
Shockwaves Can Predict Injuries
There have been studies in the past that attempted to design a scaling law that could consistently predict the risk to the human brain and found that the human brain is one of the most resilient brands to shockwaves, compared to the brains of other animals.
However, in 2010 a professor developed a computer system that was able to show pressurized air as it moved through the body. This program allowed researchers to see how energy that was generated from a blast could go through the eyes, sinuses, and other openings in the body. This study also showed that specific types of helmets could protect the brain from these shockwaves.
Further, the study found that the skull can act as a shield to absorb the effects. In the past, researchers had come to the conclusion that the larger an animal’s mass was, the more resistant it was to shockwaves, but the actual determining factor is the thickness of the animal’s skull. Compared to other animals, humans actually have much thinner skulls.
This study could be used to prevent future brain injuries, but it doesn’t help those who have already suffered. If you or a loved one has suffered a serious brain injury, contact The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 to request a free legal consultation and determine what options might be available to you.