NY traumatic brain injury attorneys examine the evidence: What can sleep cycles tell us about TBI recovery?
Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs) can result in a variety of painful, disruptive, and protracted symptoms, including loss of consciousness explains one of the New York traumatic brain injury attorneys at the F&A injury law firm in Manhattan.
For people with moderate to severe TBIs, loss of consciousness is a significant effect that can be measured in minutes, hours, or days, depending on the scope of the injury. Among its other disruptions, it interferes with people’s sleep-wake cycle. What effect can this have on recovery?
One avenue of research is exploring the connection between the sleep-wake cycle and improvements in consciousness and cognition in the aftermath of a TBI.
What can the sleep-wake cycle tell us about TBI recovery?
An interesting new study originally published in Neurology examined 30 people hospitalized for a moderate to severe TBI; most of them sustained their brain injury after a vehicular accident.
Among these patients, reaching a more or less normal sleep-wake cycle went hand-in-hand with improvements in cognitive abilities and achieving certain thresholds of consciousness. The findings apparently held even after researchers factored out other potential influences, such as the quantity of medications patients took and the amount of time that had elapsed since their injury.
Achieving greater normality and stability with sleep seems to be closely tied to TBI recovery. It may serve as an indication of how well a patient is doing after an injury, offering additional proof of injury severity and the patient’s struggle to heal.
We need more research to understand the mechanisms behind this relationship and how the sleep-wake cycle influences, and gets influenced by, other activity in the recovering brain. Researchers are also interested to know how a noisy hospital environment, for example, may interfere with patients’ ability to regain a normal sleep-wake cycle, when they’re fighting to heal from a TBI.
As accident lawyers, it’s important for us to keep track of this research, as it gives us further insights into the scope of a TBI and the pace of recovery for an accident victim. Should you suffer a TBI after an accident, this kind of information will become a part of your case as you fight for fair compensation. Don’t hesitate to contact us for dedicated, thorough legal assistance after an accident.