Measuring Blood Protein Level May Be Key to Predicting Brain Injury Outcome


Brain injuries may be mild or severe and are very common in car accidents, slip and falls and bicycle accidents. The symptoms of brain injury may last for only a brief time, or they can be debilitating and lifelong. We’ve known for a long time that it is difficult to predict how individuals will fare after brain injury. Seemingly identical accidents may not impact one person and may leave another with post-concussion syndrome.

How Can We Predict Recovery?

The key to recovering well from any brain injury is timely diagnosis and treatment. What wasn’t well understood until now is who will suffer from the long-term effects.

It now appears that we can determine the path of recovery by measuring a blood protein called neurofilament light (NfL) which is a component of brain fibre that is used for signal transmission. When these axons are damaged in a brain injury they appear at higher levels in the blood. Recent research reported in Science – Translational Medicine has found that levels of NfL in the blood correlate to the extent of brain damage. The research also found that the higher levels are also predictive of greater impairment levels one year post-injury.

What Does Research Show?

The research concluded that measuring blood plasma NfL could help with diagnosis and prognosis prediction following brain injury.

You can read the abstract of the full study here.

What Should You Do If You Have A Concussion?

If you or a loved one has suffered a brain injury in an accident because of someone else’s negligence you should contact the experienced personal injury lawyers at Deutschmann Personal Injury and Disability Law as soon as possible. We will work with you to help secure your future.


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