VITAL NUTRITIONAL SUPPLEMENTS FOR THE BRAIN
Before and After Treatment
Nuclear Imaging of Brains
Images of Obsessive Compulsive OCD
Images of Treatment
BRAIN TRAUMA AND INJURY <<Brain Nutrition intro
Wear a helmet, Avoid fights
I know, the world loves football but you must consider the brain injuries sustained by professional football athletes who eventually realize the contracts are not worth destroying one's brain.
The impact of head trauma is often overlooked in psychiatry. Even minor head injuries to vulnerable parts of the brain can cause problems for years to come. SPECT is one of the best tools in evaluating functional deficits from head trauma that are often not seen by other studies, leading to more understanding and effective treatments for patients. Typically, SPECT findings in head trauma include focal areas of decreased activity, often in a contra-coup pattern (such as decreased activity in the left anterior prefrontal cortex and right occipital lobe or the anterior and posterior aspects of a temporal lobe) and, in some cases, marked hyperactivity over the site of the injury. In many cases we have seen increased "off center" cingulate gyrus activity after a head injury.
Documentation of head injuries is essential for several reasons. For school age children and teenagers it allows them to receive more specialized services. Knowledge of the injuries is often essential for legal/insurance reasons. Patient and family understanding of the effects of brain trauma of enhances treatment compliance and a deeper understanding from family and support systems. Here are several examples.
TIM Age 15 Brain Injury
Tim, age 15, was a high school sophomore at a high school in Connecticut. From the time he was young he exhibited severe conduct problems. He had already been arrested for shoplifting, he frequently cut school and was defiant and abusive toward his parents. He did not get along with other teens at school and seemed to "never fit in." He smoked a pack of cigarettes a day and frequently used both marijuana and cocaine. He had already been in one treatment program and was on his way to a second program when his parents brought him to our clinic. From an early age, Tim was hyperactive, impulsive, moody and frequently angry, especially whenever someone would tell him no. His temper flared quickly and often, often over minor or trivial incidences. He had tried numerous medications without success. His parents had heard about my clinic and decided to come across the country to see us.
His brain SPECT study showed severe damage to his left prefrontal cortex. It was one of the most severe cases I have ever seen. When he was 18 months old he fell down a flight of stairs. His mother said he was never quite the same since then. She could just tell there was a difference in his personality. Given the level of functional damage to Tim's brain I decided to put him on a combination of an anticonvulsant medication and a stimulant. It helped lessen the rage and improve his impulse control. Given the level of damage, his chances for having full executive function are not very promising. The goal of treatment is to utilize every prescription available to help Tim develop auxiliary internal supervision mechanisms. Otherwise, legal authorities will have to impose external supervision in some form of a contained setting, basically through no fault of Tim. He doesn't have the capacity for internal supervision that is housed in the prefrontal cortex.
top down front underside
BETTY Age 88 Brain Injury Domestic Violence
Betty was the most beautiful 88-year-old woman I had ever met. She was very proper and very proud. When she was a young woman she had emigrated from England after marrying a U.S. soldier. It was not her 90-year-old husband who brought her to the hospital to see me, however, it was her sister. Her husband, far from being supportive, angrily denied that his wife was suffering from serious cognitive problems. Yet during the evaluation process it was clear that Betty had severe memory problems; she did not know where she lived, her phone number, or her husband's name. I ordered a SPECT study that showed a dent in the right side of Betty's frontal lobe. It was obvious to me that she had, at some point in her life, suffered a significant head injury. When I asked her about it, all she could do was look down and cry; she could not give me details of the event. When I asked her sister, she reported that Betty and her husband had a stormy relationship and that he was abusive towards her. Sometimes he would grab her by the hair and slam her head into the wall.
Shortly after Betty was hospitalized, her husband began pressuring me to send her home. He kept protesting that there was nothing wrong with her, yet I knew that Betty needed to be removed from that environment so I contacted the Adult Protective Services. At Betty's hearing, I used her SPECT studies to convince the judge that her home held potential danger. He then ordered her to have a conservator, and she went to live with her sister.
16 year old head injury age 7 - school failure, substance abuse, impulsivity, decreased activity in left pre-frontal cortex PFC.
79 year old, car ran into pole at age 20, long history of aggression and irritability, decreased activity left PFC and left temporal lobe.
48 yr.old male, football injury age 16, significant problems expressing feelings (alexythymia) decreased activity PFC and temporal lobe.
fall from roof notice large defect left parietal lobe. fall from roof notice large defect parietal & temporal lobe
Reproduced with permission from Amen Clinics.
Medical Disclaimer: The information on this web site is for general informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for a medical evaluation. If you feel that medical interventions are necessary, please check with your physician.