Biomechanics and teen concussions, cost of TBI care focus of two studies funded by CIHR, ONF partnership

March 31, 2017

The Ontario Neurotrauma Foundation in partnership with the Canadian Institutes of Health Research funded two research projects published results the week of March 27.

Biomechanical Analysis of Head Injury in Pediatric Patients explores the biomechanical characteristics that may predispose youth with concussions to experience transient or persistent post-concussion symptoms. While the study did not identify any specific characteristics, researchers believe the data gathered in this first biomechanical study of this issue will be a valuable reference for future studies and a validation of the physical and computation models that were used.

Dr. Roger Zemek, of the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario, collaborated on the study. It was published in the Journal of Neurosurgery: Pediatrics.

A retrospective study on the economic costs of treating brain injuries based on the visits to emergency departments that require ongoing care TBI in emergency departments a substantial economic burden (published in the Canadian Journal of Neurological Science) was led by Dr. Michael Cusimano of St. Michael’s Hospital, Toronto.

The research team reviewed 134,000 emergency department visits that occurred as a result of traumatic brain injury including concussion. During the one-year period studied, researchers estimated the lifetime cost of care was $945-million due to those injuries. Falls were the cause of almost half (47 per cent) of TBIs in the year studied. The highest rate of falls occurred among children under four and the elderly (age 75 years and older), who together were six times more likely to sustain a fall-related TBI compared with other age groups.