Often, while watching football and hockey games, we hear that a player is being evaluated for a concussion. You’ve likely heard about young girls developing a traumatic brain injury (TBI) as the result of “heading” the soccer ball. Auto and home accidents, violence and falls also often result in concussions. Almost 5 million Americans show up in an emergency room each year to be assessed for a brain injury.
Over 80 percent of the cases appearing at emergency rooms result in a CT scan of the head. While it can be reassuring that screening for TBI is taken seriously, current statistics suggest that about a million cases of TBI go undetected despite these efforts. Research shows that about a third of patients that have normal results on a CT scan showed damaging brain changes when the more sensitive MRI test was used.