Discipline: Biological Sciences
Subcategory: Physiology and Health
Lensa Ali - University of Minnesota-Twin Cities
Co-Author(s): Abdullah Bin Zahid MD, Margaret Y. Mahan MS, Nathan Nordmann BA, Michelle Chrastek MPH, Molly Hubbard MD, Drake Burri BA, Anne Kleeberger MS, Maxwell Thorpe BS, David Tupper PhD, Thomas Bergman MD, Uzma Samadani, MD, PhD; Hennepin County Medical Center, VA Medical Center, and University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN ; Radhika Edpuganti, Shivani Venkatesh, Kristina Techar BS, Chelley R.C. Henry BS, David Balser MD, Pjua Jain M.D., Matthew Tran, Zuhur Abukar, Ekram Abdullahi, Jessica Flores, Ayan Hassan, Ingrid R. Aragon, Lensa Ali, Shamso Jama, Caitlin Raasch, Nicole Oja; University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN
Every 8 seconds someone in the United States is affected by a traumatic brain injury (TBI) and TBI contributes to a large number of deaths every year. Most of the reported data about brain injuries are of patients who were admitted into hospitals as trauma patients and diagnosed with some form of TBI. Therefore the demographics of brain injury have been better studied among individuals who seek medical care than among those who do not. The purpose of this study was to investigate the demographics of brain injury in a community population. We hypothesized that sustained TBI due to abuse would be higher in females than in males and that males would have higher instances of TBI’s when compared to females due to their heightened involvement in high-risk activities (e.g. motorcycle driving, extreme sports, and military service). 672 participants, with a gender breakdown of 65% females (n=437) and 35% males (n= 235), were recruited at the 2016 Minnesota State Fair. After being consented, participants were screened via the Boston assessment of traumatic brain injury –lifetime (BAT-L) assessment and eye-tracking technology that linked their eye movements to their brain function. Participants also filled out a general background questionnaire to determine their socioeconomic status, level of education, and other potential demographic factors that could be related to their prevalence or risk of sustaining a brain injury. We found that women and men were comparable in sustaining a brain injury due to abuse, 7.8% vs. 7.0%. Males were more likely than females to report a higher number of traumatic brain injuries throughout their lifetime due to a range of causes such as a motor vehicle crash, falling from a high place, and sports. Surprisingly, we also saw a link between TBI’s due to abuse and the level of education of the participant. The likelihood of brain injury from physical abuse or an assault significantly varied across the groups with individuals having only some college or an associate degree reporting higher rates 17.7% (p-value=0.002) than those who had completed college or higher degrees. . Understanding the varying social factors that affect a person’s susceptibility to a TBI may influence intervention and safety protocols throughout the country. This data will also be useful in how we approach the treatment of TBI’s as well as the continued search for biomarkers to determine severity. In the future, we can further investigate biomarkers to determine a reliable way to quantify severity of a sustained TBI.Lensa Ali-ERN Abstract.docx
Funder Acknowledgement(s): Hennepin County Medical Center, McDonald?s Eye Care Associates, North Star Stem Alliance
Faculty Advisor: Dr. Uzma Samadani, email@example.com
Role: My role as a researcher was in data collection. We assembled the eye-tracking computers and eye exam materials at the Minnesota State Fair every day for its 12 day-duration. We were in a booth titled "HCMC Healthy Brain Initiative". As volunteers we rotated through explaining the study to interested fair attendees, and then deferring them to a research associate for consenting if they chose to participate, and conducting the background, baseline, and cognitive assessments. We used an abridged version of the screening component of the Boston assessment of traumatic brain injury -- lifetime (BAT-L) to assess participants.