Could a 'Trojan Horse' Better Identify Traumatic Brain Injury?

October 23, 2013

Accurately diagnosing traumatic brain injuries (TBI) and concussions is difficult, as standard CT or MRI scans can't see most changes to the brain caused by these injuries.

Clinicians must rely on patients accurately and candidly describing their symptoms, which many patients -- such as soldiers and athletes -- are hesitant to do for fear of being removed from action with their unit or team.

Borrowing a tactic used to identify lung infections, University of Virginia School of Medicine researchers have discovered a potential method to identify TBI that uses positron emission tomography (PET) scans and the body's immune response to a brain injury.