Therapy May Help Improve Cognitive Function After Brain Injury

A recent article in ScienceDaily talks about an at-home therapy technique that led to improvements in cognitive function and post-traumatic stress disorder in patients with Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI).  The study published by Photomedicine and Laser Surgery, involved a daily application of light therapy via light-emitting diodes (LEDs).

Cell-based studies have shown that LEDs improve cellular metabolism and produce beneficial physiological effects.  The low-level light therapy delivers red and near-infrared (NIR) light energy by the external placement of lasers or LEDs.

Two patients with longstanding traumatic brain injuries were treated with the therapy.  The LEDs were applied nightly and the patients demonstrated substantial improvement in cognitive function, including improved memory, inhibition, and ability to sustain attention and focus.  One of the patients had amazing results and was able to discontinue medical disability and return to work full-time.  However, treatment seems to be needed continuously.  When treatment stopped for a few weeks cognitive gains decreased but returned when treatment restarted.

Raymond J. Lanzafame, MD, MBA, Editor-in-Chief of the Journal says that “the results of this study will provide a basis for future therapeutic use of phototherapy to improve recovery after injury and facilitate management of other CNS disorders.  The development of novel therapies to restore function after neurological injury, stroke or disease is an increasingly important goal in medical research as a result of an increase in non-fatal traumatic wounds and the increase prevalence of dementias and other degenerative disorders in our aging population.”

It is difficult to assess the true value and reliability of the procedure for such a small study.  Further research and additional studies are needed to test the scientific validity of the technique.  However, any help that survivors of traumatic brain injuries receive is always welcome.

If you have questions about the legal issues associated with a traumatic brain injury talk to lawyers experienced in assisting those with TBIs.  Call a personal injury attorney at Fisher Stark, P.A. We proudly serve the communities of Western North Carolina including Asheville, Hendersonville, Waynesville, Brevard and Hickory.

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