Navigation Links
Brain Scans Could Spot Developmental Problems in Kids
Date:9/9/2010

By Randy Dotinga
HealthDay Reporter

THURSDAY, Sept. 9 (HealthDay News) -- A new study suggests that a quick MRI scan could tell doctors if a child's brain is maturing properly, potentially providing an early warning sign that mental problems are developing.

Researchers say the strategy could turn an ordinary brain scan into a tool similar to the age-old growth charts that tell pediatricians if kids are growing at an appropriate rate.

"It's a way to understand individual differences and make predictions about an individual's neurologic and psychological health," said study co-author Dr. Bradley L. Schlaggar. "The earlier you can intervene, the more likely it is that you'll benefit a patient."

Currently, brain scans don't play a major role in the treatment of mental illness, said Schlaggar, an associate professor of developmental neurology at Washington University School of Medicine and St. Louis Children's Hospital.

It's possible to find a tumor or diagnose a stroke with the help of a brain scan, he said, but the technology almost always fails to reveal any problems in the brain of a person who has a disorder like autism, schizophrenia or epilepsy. "That's vexing," he said, "because you know that something is wrong with the brain, but the report is normal."

In the new study, Schlaggar and colleagues report that they've found a way around this challenge. Using MRI technology that detects which areas of the brain are most active based on their usage of oxygen, they scanned 238 volunteers aged 7 to 30. They compiled the results and developed a baseline of what the brains of people should look like as they grow older.

The findings, which are published in the Sept. 10 issue of Science, could allow doctors to measure whether a patient's brain has matured to the level it should have reached based on his or her age, Schlaggar said.

But if a child's brain isn't as developed as it should be, can doctors do anything about it? Possibly, said Dr. Paul R. Carney, chief of pediatric neurology at the University of Florida.

If a 7-year-old child has a frontal lobe that looks like that of a 5-year-old, for example, doctors could turn to learning therapies designed to boost that part of the brain, said Carney, who's familiar with the findings.

"Right now, most learning techniques don't speak to a specific brain network," Carney said. "But here, you'd be able to design a therapy and measure the response."

In other words, the brain scans could both diagnose a problem in the brain and help gauge whether a treatment is working.

More information

The U.S. National Library of Medicine has more on MRI brain scans.

SOURCES: Bradley L. Schlaggar, M.D., Ph.D., associate professor, developmental neurology, Washington University School of Medicine and St. Louis Children's Hospital; Paul R. Carney, M.D., professor and chief, pediatric neurology, University of Florida, Gainesville; Sept. 10, 2010, Science


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Gadgets not related to teenagers brain pain
2. Dementia Rates Escalate as Brain Capacity Diminishes with Age
3. Researchers discover new way to kill pediatric brain tumors
4. Scientists Pinpoint Area of Brain That Fears Losing Money
5. Physical Changes in Brain Linked to Altered Spirituality
6. Pro Athletes Brains React at Olympic Speed
7. Neuroscientists reveal new links that regulate brain electrical activity
8. Brain Scan Shows What Beauty is Worth
9. Study supports alternative anti-seizure medication following acute brain injury
10. Exercise helps protect brain of multiple sclerosis patients
11. Pittsburgh Neurosurgeons Explore Use of Drug that Illuminates Brain Tumor Cells To Guide Surgery
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Brain Scans Could Spot Developmental Problems in Kids
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... “The Journey: From the Mountains to the ... save lost souls in the Philippines. “The Journey: From the Mountains to the Mission ... of the Bible. She has taught all ages and currently teaches a class of ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... Orleans, LA (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... centers in the U.S., announced today its plans to open a flagship location in ... will occupy the former Rooms To Go store next to Office Depot in the ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Asante, a nationally recognized health system in ... existing home health joint venture through an agreement, effective October 1, 2017, to ... home health company with Asante, delivering clinically integrated care, for the past eight ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... , ... Leading pediatric oncology experts at Children’s National Health System ... of the International Society of Paediatric Oncology (SIOP) Oct. 12-15. Chaired by ... Blood Disorders at Children’s National, and Stephen P. Hunger, M.D., Chief of the ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... In ... taxes a year. In some states—like New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Texas, Virginia, ... overseas retirement havens have extremely low property-tax rates, which contributes to the relatively ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:10/11/2017)... , Oct. 11, 2017  Caris Life Sciences ... on fulfilling the promise of precision medicine, today announced ... joined Caris, Precision Oncology Alliance™ (POA) as its 17 ... centers, the St. Jude Crosson Cancer Institute will help ... the use of tumor profiling, making cancer treatment more ...
(Date:10/7/2017)... --  Provista, a proven leader in the supply ... power, today announced a new resource area on Provistaco.com ... is the online home for case studies, articles on ... releases, slideshows and events. ... at their fingertips, viewers can also watch short videos ...
(Date:10/2/2017)... , Oct. 2, 2017 Diplomat Pharmacy, Inc. ... Day Software and Consulting, LLC , and named its ... Software, based in Tennessee , will ... Day expands EnvoyHealth,s service offerings for health care partners ... "In an interoperable world, ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: