The CDC (Centers for Disease Control) defines a traumatic brain injury (TBI) as:
“A blow to the head or a penetrating head injury that disrupts the normal function of the brain. TBI can result when the head suddenly and violently hits an object or when an object pierces the skull and enters brain tissue. An injury can also occur without a direct blow to the head, such as in an auto accident where the forces cause the head to move violently in one direction and then snap back in another direction. This causes the brain to be jostled around inside the skull and can also injure the brain.
Suffering a closed head injury can produce symptoms that range from mild to severe, based on the degree of damage that was done to the brain. While it’s possible for a person to experience a TBI to not have a loss of consciousness, in moderate to severe cases, LOC does usually happen. More severe cases of traumatic brain injuries often can result in coma or even death.”
Traumatic brain injuries are also common in athletes who participate in contact sports such as football, and experience multiple “head hits.” These hits affect the brain, and over time, the damage becomes cumulative, resulting in post-concussive disorder. Members of the military are also commonly affected too. Traumatic brain injury for these folks can occur by direct hits or injuries to the head, but also by repeated exposures to the forces of “blast injuries.”
Those who have suffered a traumatic brain injury will often need other therapies to assist with regaining memory, learning skills, coordination, physical function, speech, and coping mechanisms. This is because brain injuries are complex and can affect many aspects of a person’s life, including their emotions and the ability to think clearly. In fact, some people cannot work again or complete day-to-day activities.
Often a traumatic brain injury can cause brain swelling, hematoma (blood clot), or bleeding within the brain which can be life-threatening. A person who has suffered a traumatic brain injury or concussion of any kind should be taken to the emergency room as soon as possible, even if loss of consciousness is not experienced. Early intervention is crucial to help avoid complications and to avoid the injury worsening.
There are people who are at higher risk for brain injuries including athletes, the elderly (because they are at higher risk for falls), and children and teenagers who are involved in physical-type activities.
Athletes, in particular, can suffer repeated hits or injuries to the brain and the effects of those can be cumulative over time. The full degree of symptoms may present later on as the brain begins to deteriorate.
Treatment is important. A Traumatic Brain Injury if untreated can lead to shortened life span and significant complications. According to the Journal of Neurotrauma:
“Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) produces both acute and more chronic consequences that lead to permanent disabilities that increase long-term mortality and reduced life expectation.”
The Journal goes on to explain that untreated TBI can result in various secondary pathological conditions, including seizures, sleep disorders, neurodegenerative diseases, endocrine dysregulation, and psychiatric problems.
“What we’re finding is that the brain responds to insult the same way, whether it’s chronic sleep deprivation, whether it’s the mechanical injury of head-to-head contact repeatedly on a football field, or whether it’s being exposed to repeated blast injuries in the military or just direct contact with IEDs. The brain seems to be responding to these injuries the same way. …
“For so many years now, there’s been this feeling of helplessness that concussions are just a fact of life and there’s not a lot that we can do. I think we’re starting to get down to, at a foundational level, the root cause of mechanisms of injury, which will lead us down the pathway of finding solutions.”
– Dr. Erik Won, President, from his appearance on the Broken Brain podcast
New research is confirming that factors resulting from a concussion do cause changes in brain function including altered activity of certain neural circuits in the brain.
Patients who are suffering from a Concussion or Traumatic Brain Injury have markers that are visible in their EEG studies. MeRT(sm) is a treatment protocol that has evolved from TMS (Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation). MeRT, through the use of quantitative EEG, is able to see EXACTLY what is going on in your brain and individualize treatment for each patient based on their exact needs. Once your qEEG is completed, you will be able to SEE the dysregulation in your study. This scientific approach is unique to each person.
MeRT is customized to each individual’s needs based on the results of the EEG and EKG. We tailor the treatment protocol based on the location, frequency, and amount of power used by the magnet. This technology works by using a magnetic coil to neuromodulate the brain’s electrical activity. We perform a quantitative EEG on each patient in order to determine the exact frequency of the brain. These results are then reviewed and evaluated by our clinician, Kayleigh Prowse, FNP. Please note that Dr. Julie Kim, oversees all treatment for each patient.
Because treatment is customized specifically for you, this can lead to significant clinical improvements, and many of our patients are able to feel better and go off of their medications!
This treatment is a very safe and gentle therapy. MeRT is a cutting-edge treatment process that combines TMS, a Quantitative Electroencephalogram (qEEG), and Electrocardiogram (ECG/EKG) to analyze and formulate treatments that are tailored for each individual’s unique brain pattern.
In the ensuing months after the concussion, I just wasn’t myself… My academics began to suffer as well. I didn’t feel right. My EEG showed me that something had physically changed with how my brain functioned. After three days of treatment, I felt substantially better. After two weeks, I felt like I did before my injury. MeRT was life-changing.” – 21-year old female with TBI, Collegiate Soccer Player, Jan 2019
I’m back! My TBI turned me into someone I barely recognized. I was depressed, mean, and short-tempered. Having to push through life filled with frustration and a deep sense of sadness that this was it. I just had to keep pushing through life with an overwhelming tiredness. I’m so glad I was wrong. I think my direct reports and family are even more thankful. This treatment changed everything, and I am forever thankful.” – 41-year old male with TBI, Executive, Nov 2017
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