Are dementia and head trauma linked?
Substantial evidence exists linking moderate to severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) with increased dementia risk. The most recent estimates show people with a history of head trauma have greater odds, with estimates ranging 1.5 to 2 times more likely, of eventually being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, mild cognitive impairment, depression and other mood-related disorders, compared to those who have not experienced head trauma.
When the head trauma is mild, it still contributes to an increased risk of dementia, according to recent studies. Studies have also found that single and repeated head trauma may have similar effects. There is still much work to be done to determine how it may trigger changes in the brain that can contribute to long-term neurological and psychiatric changes.
Canadians working in this field, such as myself, are poised to make major contributions to this important question in the near future and we look forward to sharing the results with all of you.
Find out more about the Alzheimer Society Research Program and how it supports researchers like Dr. Wellington.
Alzheimer Society Research Program Grant Recipient