Functional Scan of Cerebral Blood Flow Diagnoses Concussion
In the March 2015 online issue of JAMA Neurology neuroscientist Timothy Meier of Albuquerque, NM published a study of 44 college football players with cognitive and behavioral symptoms of concussion. Dr. Meier used a form of neuroimaging that tracks patterns of cerebral blood flow CBF). He found that the players who improved and became asymptomatic post-concussion showed normalized CBF, whereas the players who continued to be symptomatic showed reduced CBF, especially in a part of the brain known as the dorsal midinsular cortex. The conclusion of the study was that quantified CBF can be used as an objective biomarker for concussion. What does this mean for victims of head injury who are suing in court for compensation? It means that if neuro-imaging of brain structures like CT scans or MRIs fail to show brain damage, a functional scan for quantitative CBF can help establish brain injury from an accident such as a car crash or fall.