Thursday, July 21, 2011

Traumatic Brain Injury a Hot Topic at Alzheimer's Association International Conference in Paris

AAIC keynote speaker Nicolas Sarkozy/AAIC
One of the most-discussed topics of the Alzheimer's Association International Conference (AAIC) that ends today is the role of traumatic brain injury (TBI) in development of dementia, particularly in veterans and athletes. Research presented at the conference showed that older veterans who experienced a TBI showed a more than twofold risk for developing dementia. What researchers learn from these patients can be used to help those who experience any form of TBI. 

"About 1.7 million people experience a TBI each year in the United States, primarily due to falls and car crashes," explained speaker Kristine Yaffe, M.D., a professor of psychiatry, neurology and epidemiology at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) and director of the Memory Disorders Program at San Francisco VA Medical center. "TBI is also referred to as the 'signature wound' of the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, where TBI accounts for 22 percent of casualties overall and 59 percent of blast-related injuries. Data suggest that TBI in older veterans may predispose them to development of dementia. And they raise concern about the potential long-term consequences of TBI in younger veterans." 

To read more about how civilians will benefit from the military's experience with brain trauma, see Psychiatric News at


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