Physicians Hall Front

Addressing Traumatic Brain Injury Worldwide

Milwaukee, Oct. 4, 2022 – Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is one of the leading causes of injury related death and disability worldwide. To address it – as well as find ways to improve prevention and access to care – the Lancet Neurology Commission was created as an international research body.

The commission presented its latest findings to the Collaborative European Neurotrauma Effectiveness Research in TBI (CENTER-TBI) project, Sept. 30, in Antwerp, Belgium.

The article, which was published in The Lancet Neurology, was co-authored by Drs. Benjamin Brett, Lindsay Nelson and Michael McCrea, who recently was named the first Director of the Neuroscience Institute’s Clinical Trials Office.

“TBI affects tens of millions of people every year, worldwide,” said Dr. Brett, assistant professor of neurosurgery. “This research is intended to help policy makers and caregivers better understand why TBI happens, how we respond to it and how we better treat it to improve outcomes.”

The paper – which notes advances made in diagnosing and treating TBI, including biomarkers that may better pinpoint TBI injuries than clinical decisions, and a decrease in mortality among moderate and severe injuries – calls for future research into why 50% of mild TBI patients never fully recover. It also calls for additional insight into how to improve treatments for patients who are older or experience comorbidities, why women experience TBI have poorer outcomes than men, and how to better classify injuries so that treatment may be better individualized.

“Blood-based biomarkers require additional development and approval, but we believe they offer the promise of much more precise diagnosis – and, thus, more targeted care,” said Dr. Nelson, associate professor of neurosurgery.

The commission says international, collaborative research efforts must be strengthened, and a shared terminology should be adopted so that data may be more easily shared across studies.

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