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Sunday, October 06, 2019

Minor Brain Injuries: We Are All at Risk

The brain makes the body and you make your life.  This is one of my favorite sayings.  What is your awareness of brain injury?  How much stress does it take to harm the brain?

I prefer we do a lot of preventive work to protect our brains, but sometimes we are struck with injury even if it seems minor.  We should never underestimate the stress on the brain and it is important to act quickly to assist in the brain's healing. 

This is why S.T.A.R. Sessions are so beneficial.  We could call it chiropractic on steroids, however, we use natural means to regain and maintain our health, so pardon the pun.  

For more information on TBI and minor TBI, I found this article written by a chiropractic neurologist.  He emphasizes how an injured brain has difficulty with metabolism and healing can be impaired.  
 Enjoy the article: 

Hope and Help for Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)

When we think of traumatic brain injury we think of severe head trauma, coma and hospitalization for weeks or months. But research is finding that mild or moderate traumatic brain injury, we call it mTBI for short, can occur with even minor insult to the brain. 
The symptoms can include a foggy feeling (brain fog), lack of concentration and other signs of what brain researchers call cognitive dysfunction. Usually the patient with mild-to-moderate traumatic brain injury(mTBI) will complain about headaches. They can be mild daily headaches often with frequent migraine-like episodes. Also patients who have suffered a mTBI will feel dizzy or unsteady. Some have full blown vertigo. These symptoms can last days or for unfortunate patients, years after their injury. 
In chronic cases patient complain of vague feeling of anxiety and love ones might notice personality changes after long term symptoms. Millions of Americans are injured and develop symptoms of mTBI every year. 
Researchers believe that the condition is missed or under diagnosed by physicians. The symptoms of mTBI can be debilitating and last a lifetime. The lack of proper diagnosis and the long term impact of symptoms of traumatic brain injures is creating a significant health care crisis. What is even more unfortunate is the fact that currently there is no drug treatments that have proven effective to treat the chronic form of mTBI.
Lets take a quick look at what happens to the brain after trauma. We know that seemingly minor head trauma like from sports or a minor rear end auto accident can produce profound life changing effects in the brain. When the brain is traumatized there is local damage at the site of impact. 
However, the damage often does not stay localized. Unfortunately there is a second wave of injury that spreads far from the initial site of the damage and may encompass the entire brain. Obviously this is a serious problem. The brain is an extremely complex organ and its reaction to even minor trauma is likewise very complex. What we know is when the brain is jostled it loses its ability to burn sugar for energy. 
Since glucose or sugar is the brain's main fuel source, this is a serious problem. The mTBI causes widespread metabolic changes in the brain while at the same time it knocks our brain's power supply. To put it simply, the brain requires increased energy utilization after injury to try to re-boot, but at the same time the energy supply for the re-boot is severely compromised. This is why symptoms of mTBI can continue for months or even years. 
Furthermore antioxidants, which the brain uses to protect against ongoing damage, are consumed rapidly, leaving the brain vulnerable to future injury. While there are undoubtedly many more events that occur after brain injury, another important consequence is secondary inflammation that occurs. This neuro-inflammation as it is called, kills off healthy nerve cells. This inflammation further perpetuates the damage weeks or months after the initial injury.
What is even worse is the fact that there are few, if any, current medications that have been shown to reverse or even alleviate these metabolic changes in the brain that occur after trauma. But there is hope for treating both the symptoms and the underlying cause of persistent mTBI symptoms. 
You may have heard about Professor Ted Carrick, the chiropractic neurologist that was part of the team that helped Sidney Crosby recover from his TBI. Chiropractic neurologists have developed rehabilitation protocols specifically designed to address lost function of the nervous system following a TBI. They can be particularly effective dealing with balance issues. 
Following TBI, the patient is assessed to identify lost neurological function and a highly specific individualized set of neurological rehabilitation exercises is implemented. On their own, these exercises can be quite effective in the restoration of lost neurological function. 
Over the last decade, Professor Yuri Danilov and his research team at the University of Wisconsin have pioneered a technique called Cranial Nerve Non-invasive Neuromodulation or CN-NINM for short. What Danilov and his team have found is that stimulating the brain while applying neurological rehab techniques amplifies the rehabilitation of lost neurological function. The results of the combining Dr Danilov's brain stimulation techniques + chiropractic neurological rehabilitation can be truly amazing. This offers great hope for folks suffering from ongoing traumatic brain injury symptoms. 
Another exciting and promising research development in the field of traumatic brain injury is the findings that the damaged brain can shift from utilizing glucose or sugar for energy to other energy sources (acetate for one).
Researchers have found in the animal model of mTBI, that increasing certain nutrients in the diet leads to increased energy production in the brain. This is important because as we discussed earlier in this article, the brain needs to expend a tremendous amount to energy to repair itself following even mild injury. 
A shift from glucose metabolism in the brain that is impaired following brain trauma to other forms of energy production that can be enhanced through the diet is indeed exciting news for people suffering from traumatic brain injury. It offers the potential to provide the brain the energy it needs to reboot and repair. 
Combining proper brain nutritional supplementation, adding specific neurological rehabilitation techniques developed by chiropractic neurologists while at the same time amplifying the effects of these techniques through Dr. Danilov's methods, offers the first real hope for chronic traumatic brain injury patients in years. 
The complexities of traumatic brain injury are being unraveled through basic scientific research and individualized and comprehensive methods of functional brain restoration are emerging based on this new information. After years of frustration for both patients suffering from mTBI and the doctors who treat them, there appears to be a light at the end of the tunnel.
Hi I am Dr. George Kukurin, licensed to practice chiropractic & acupuncture. I'm also one of a few chiropractic physicians who are Diplomats of the American Chiropractic Academy of Neurology. I have a keen interest in conditions of the nervous system like Traumatic Brain Injury and Parkinson's Disease. I am a former faculty member of the Post Graduate Neurology Department of Parker College.
The results our patient have obtained have been presented at Johns Hopkins Medical School and at the Peripheral Nerve Society scientific meetings. I have post-graduate education from the Harvard Medical School, Johns Hopkins and the Mayo Clinic. 
The treatments we have pioneered for our patients have produced some amazing results. They have been seen on local Fox and ABC newscasts and published in medical journals indexed in the National Library of Medicine.

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