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Can a Brain Injury Increase the Risk of Alzheimer’s Disease?

A traumatic brain injury is generally caused by an impact to the head, which disrupts normal brain function. As a result, a person’s cognitive abilities, such as learning and thinking skills, could be affected. Despite the fact that most traumatic brain injuries are classified as mild since they are generally not life-threatening, they can still have a serious impact and long-lasting effects on the injured person.

There are two primary ways in which a brain injury, even a mild one, can pose a threat to a person’s cognitive health:

  1. Traumatic brain injuries can have a direct impact on a person, some of which can be permanent, which include the inability to remember the events surrounding the injury, confusion, difficulty learning or remembering new information, trouble speaking coherently, lack of coordination, and issues with vision and hearing.
  1. Specific types of traumatic brain injuries can also increase the risk of developing Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia, which can arise years after the injury was sustained.

Commonly Experienced Symptoms

Some of the most common symptoms of a traumatic brain injury include:

  • Unconsciousness
  • Persistent headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Blurred vision
  • Ringing in ears
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Mood swings
  • Change in sleep patterns

The severity of these symptoms will depend on the injury you suffered and whether it was mild, moderate, or severe.

Brain Injuries and Dementia

For over 30 years, research has consistently linked moderate and severe traumatic brain injuries to an increased risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia years after the original brain injury. In fact, one study found that older adults who had sustained a moderate traumatic brain injury had a 2.3 times greater risk of developing Alzheimer’s compared to those who had not suffered a brain injury. Those who suffered a severe traumatic brain injury had a 4.5 times greater risk.

Additionally, some research suggests brain injuries can cause dementia in those who have a variation of the gene apolipoprotein E (APOE), though more research is necessary to further understand this link. In recent years, evidence has also shown that individuals who suffer repeated traumatic brain injuries or concussions, such as professional athletes, are prone to developing chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) than those who have not been subjected to repeated brain injuries.

However, while research and evidence suggest that there is a significant connection between brain injuries and dementia, there is no guarantee that those who sustain a brain injury will develop dementia.

Traumatic Brain Injury in Atlanta

If you suffered a traumatic brain injury that was caused by someone else’s negligence, you could potentially continue to feel the effects of this life-altering injury. At Pratt Clay, LLC, our catastrophic injury attorneys in Atlanta are dedicated to fighting on behalf of the wrongfully injured and will do what is necessary to ensure you obtain the fair and just compensation you deserve during this difficult time.

Get started on your case today and contact our law office at (404) 998-5258 to request your free initial case evaluation with one of our knowledgeable attorneys.