Navigation Links
Cooling may prevent trauma-induced epilepsy
Date:2/21/2013

In the weeks, months and years after a severe head injury, patients often experience epileptic seizures that are difficult to control. A new study in rats suggests that gently cooling the brain after injury may prevent these seizures.

"Traumatic head injury is the leading cause of acquired epilepsy in young adults, and in many cases the seizures can't be controlled with medication," says senior author Matthew Smyth, MD, associate professor of neurological surgery and of pediatrics at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. "If we can confirm cooling's effectiveness in human trials, this approach may give us a safe and relatively simple way to prevent epilepsy in these patients."

The researchers reported their findings in Annals of Neurology.

Cooling the brain to protect it from injury is not a new concept. Cooling slows down the metabolic activity of nerve cells, and scientists think this may make it easier for brain cells to survive the stresses of an injury.

Doctors currently cool infants whose brains may have had inadequate access to blood or oxygen during birth. They also cool some heart attack patients to reduce peripheral brain damage when the heart stops beating.

Smyth has been exploring the possibility of using cooling to prevent seizures or reduce their severity.

"Warmer brain cells seem to be more electrically active, and that may increase the likelihood of abnormal electrical discharges that can coalesce to form a seizure," Smyth says. "Cooling should have the opposite effect."

Smyth and colleagues at the University of Washington and the University of Minnesota test potential therapies in a rat model of brain injury. These rats develop chronic seizures weeks after the injury.

Researchers devised a headset that cools the rat brain. They were originally testing its ability to stop seizures when they noticed that cooling seemed to be not only stopping but also preventing seizures.

Scientists redesigned the study to focus on prevention. Under the new protocols, they put headsets on some of the rats that cooled their brains by less than 4 degrees Fahrenheit. Another group of rats wore headsets that did nothing. Scientists who were unaware of which rats they were observing monitored them for seizures during treatment and after the headsets were removed.

Rats that wore the inactive headset had progressively longer and more severe seizures weeks after the injury, but rats whose brains had been cooled only experienced a few very brief seizures as long as four months after injury.

Brain injury also tends to reduce cell activity at the site of the trauma, but the cooling headsets restored the normal activity levels of these cells.

The study is the first to reduce injury-related seizures without drugs, according to Smyth, who is director of the Pediatric Epilepsy Surgery program at St. Louis Children's Hospital.

"Our results show that the brain changes that cause this type of epilepsy happen in the days and weeks after injury, not at the moment of injury or when the symptoms of epilepsy begin," says Smyth. "If clinical trials confirm that cooling has similar effects in humans, it could change the way we treat patients with head injuries, and for the first time reduce the chance of developing epilepsy after brain injury."

Smyth and his colleagues have been testing cooling devices in humans in the operating room, and are planning a multi-institutional trial of an implanted focal brain cooling device to evaluate the efficacy of cooling on established seizures.


'/>"/>

Contact: Michael C. Purdy
purdym@wustl.edu
314-286-0122
Washington University School of Medicine
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. Cooling Helps Oxygen-Deprived Newborns: Study
2. Heroes of Chemistry: Developed new drugs and technology to cut heating and cooling bills
3. Delta Cooling Towers extends Industry Leading Warranty to 20 Years
4. Study of brain cooling and clot-busting drug therapy for stroke receives FDA OK to expand
5. New drug prevents spread of human prostate cancer cells
6. Antibody therapy prevents gastrointestinal damage following radiation exposure in mice
7. To prevent leukemias dreaded return, go for the stem cells
8. Rapid Asthma Treatment in ER May Prevent Admission
9. Report says new evidence could tip the balance in aspirin cancer prevention care
10. Drug May Prevent Pancreatitis After Digestive Procedure
11. Decision guide reduced uncertainty over breast cancer prevention, study finds
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Cooling may prevent trauma-induced epilepsy
(Date:5/28/2016)... ... 2016 , ... May 26, 2016- In search of the K. Warriors, Shaolin ... of “K Warriors” on June 4, 2016 at Ashbury Hotel and Suites 600 West ... and hosted by Shaolin Institute and sanctioned by KSF (Kungfu Sanda Federation), This is ...
(Date:5/27/2016)... ... May 27, 2016 , ... More than a third of ... not surprising that bariatric surgery has received increased attention in recent years, as an ... when it comes to weight loss, most people are familiar with the basic requirements ...
(Date:5/27/2016)... Gilsum, New Hampshire (PRWEB) , ... May 27, 2016 , ... ... natural skin care products, announced today that it has been recognized as one of ... men entering parenthood. Badger was named as one of nine small businesses providing progressive ...
(Date:5/27/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... May 27, 2016 , ... This campaign ... a stroke, which we as a society can control and change. , As nearly ... nearly every 40 seconds within the United States. Plus, with an estimated 129,000 of ...
(Date:5/27/2016)... ... ... Beleza Medspa has initiated a new program to assist active duty ... that Coolsculpting is being used for for more than just cosmetic purposes. ... prescribed body-fat standard, measured by the circumference-based tape method. The tape-test is used ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/25/2016)... 25, 2016 MedDay, a biotechnology company ... an oral presentation entitled "High doses of biotin in progressive ... be given by Professor Ayman Tourbah , Principal Investigator ... the European Academy of Neurology (EAN) in Copenhagen, ... 3" will take place on Sunday, 29 May 2016 from ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... 24, 2016 Cirujanos holandeses han ... a los médicos a compartir sus mejores prácticas por ... mundial. Profesionales médicos de Europa, África, Asia ... a la aplicación, que combina la transmisión en vivo ... seguro. Educación   "Imagine un médico ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... 2016 ARANZ Medical  Ltd a ... sector, has been named the Coretex Hi-Tech Emerging Company of ... Dr Bruce Davey , CEO of ARANZ Medical ... really good to be recognised for the work we are ... used in 35 countries around the world from Sub-Saharan Africa ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: