Even a single concussion appears to cause changes in the structure of the brain that may make cognitive problems and depression a higher likelihood, a new study has found.
The study, which used magnetic resonance imaging to compare healthy subjects’ brains with those of patients a year after a mild traumatic brain injury, indicated that those with such injuries had shrinkage in brain regions that are key to memory, executive function and mood regulation.
The study, published online in the journal Radiology on Tuesday, is the first to show that even a single concussion can leave measurable scars on the brain. It used three-dimensional MRI scanning to measure the brain volume of 28 recent concussion victims and 22 matched controls. A year later, researchers conducted the same scans of 19 patients with mild traumatic brain injuries and 12 of a healthy control group.
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