February 25, 2016 – TBI Assessment


Anchor lead: Do conventional imaging studies demonstrate traumatic brain injury? Elizabeth Tracey reports

TBI, the acronym for traumatic brain injury, is on the rise, with more and more studies demonstrating a role for the condition in brain inflammation, depression, and dementia.  Yet Vani Rao, a TBI expert at Johns Hopkins and author of a recent book on the subject, says conventional imaging studies often aren’t sensitive enough to pick up mild or even moderate injury.

Rao: We do scans like CT scans and MRI and then in the majority of people who have a mild TBI those scans are normal.  This is another reason why it’s called a silent epidemic because these things are not captured in a conventional neuroimaging scan.  So it’s really based on a clinical history so it’s really important to ask the right questions and it’s really important to do a comprehensive evaluation.  :24

Rao says the best strategy is prevention, and for those who participate in sports, avoidance of repeated TBI.  At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.