Objective Scans to Prove Concussion

Believe it or not, you can have a concussion without having abnormal MRI and CT scan results. For this reason, concussions can be difficult to prove. The good news is, advancing technology is making it possible to objectively prove concussion with a special scan.

Personal injury attorney Dale Casares will discuss several state-of-the-art scans that show problems within the brain linked to a concussion.

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Prove Concussion with Objective Scan

Hi, so if a MRI and a CT scan can’t show a concussion, what can you do to further diagnose, prove it, and develop a treatment plan for it? My name is Dale Casares, I am a personal injury attorney at Robinson and Henry.

I have helped so many people who have had concussions but have a normal brain MRI or normal head CT scan. So there’s four different things that I want to go over.

Doctor’s Opinion v. Objective Scan

The first one is just simple neurological testing. This is testing that your doctor will do to document any deficits that you may be experiencing.

Traditional Testing

So it’s eye tracking, its strength, its motor skills, balance, stability, cognition, a series of different many tests that will help that doctor determine if you do have any deficits that might indicate a concussion. But that is just a doctor’s opinion, right?

So the next three things I’m going to talk about are actual objective testing that, you know, is done by some kind of a computer.

Testing Your Eyes

So the first one is VNG, it’s Videonystagmography. What this is, it’s eye tracking and sounds. So, it’s designed to test and document a person’s ability to follow visual objects with their eyes and how well that person’s eyes respond to a stimuli from the vestibular system.

So, the vestibular system is in the inner ear, and it is responsible for providing the brain with information regarding motion and spatial orientation, balance and stability.

So again, it’s a completely, purely objective test. You can’t fake it, and it shows the deficits that you have, which indicate whether or not you have suffered a concussion and what to do about it.

Testing Your Brain Function

The next test is a SPECT scan. That stands for single-photon emission computed tomography. It is a functional brain imaging. Whereas a brain MRI and a head CT scan show anatomy, just structural anatomy. A SPECT scan shows function.

So it’s, actually, measuring blood flow, and you can see exactly which areas of the brain are healthy, which ones are overactive, and which ones are underactive.

And it’s a beautiful picture of your brain, and it really helps identify and give credit to the symptoms that you’re experiencing. And again, that just helps with the treatment plan and what further actions you can take to help your brain recover.

Checking Your Brain’s Structure

And then the fourth one that I’m mentioning today is a DTI scan, it’s diffusion tensor imaging. And this is just a beautiful picture. Again, it shows function. So it shows the brain microstructure. It shows white matter tracks and diffuse axonal injury.

So, axons are long connecting fibers in the brain, and when a person suffers a concussion by having their head go back and forth, side to side, get hit by something, those axons are sheared, they’re ripped. So this imaging shows where those axons are missing.

So, you’ll have a normal flow of axons and then you’ll have a empty space.

So again, these are four different things that can test for and objectively document a concussion and help with a treatment plan for it.

Connect with Dale

My name is Dale Casares, I am a personal injury attorney at Robinson and Henry. If you have any questions about these tests or anything else concussion related, please feel free to use the main email, to TBI, it stands for traumatic brain injury, @robinsonandhenry.com, thanks.

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