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Experts call for research on prevalence of delayed neurological dysfunction after head injury
Date:4/5/2013

ease in CSF biomarkers in boxers when the CSF is taken soon after a fight, and this may predict which boxers are more likely to develop detrimental long-term effects. CSF samples are now only obtained by invasive lumbar puncture; a blood test would be preferable.

"Biomarkers would be a valuable tool both from a research perspective in comparing them before and after injury and from a clinical perspective in terms of diagnostic and prognostic guidance," said Dr. Gandy. "Having the biomarker information will also help us understand the mechanism of disease development, the reasons for its delayed progression, and the pathway toward effective therapeutic interventions."

Currently, there are no treatments for boxer's dementia or CTE, but these diseases are preventable. "With more protective equipment, adjustments in the rules of the game, and overall education among athletes, coaches, and parents, we should be able to offer informed consent to prospective sports players and soldiers. With the right combination of identified genetic risk factor, biomarkers, and better drugs, we should be able to dramatically improve the outcome of TBI and prevent the long-term, devastating effects of CTE," said Dr. Gandy.

Mount Sinai is one of five medical centers in the country selected to be part of the new Neurological Care Program for retired NFL players. The Center for Cognitive Health provides expert care for patients struggling with memory and other cognitive impairments, across a full range of ages and disorders. The Center brings together internationally-recognized neurologists, psychiatrists, neuropsychologists, neuroscientists, and patient care managers as one team, skilled in providing thorough diagnosis, customized treatment, and access to clinical trials.


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