Research Links Traumatic Brain Injuries to Parkinson’s Disease

May 24, 2014
by Adler Markoff & Associates

Request A Free Consultation

(405) 607-8757

    Research Links Traumatic Brain Injuries to Parkinson’s Disease

    According to an important new study, individuals who suffer serious head injuries may have an increased risk of developing Parkinson’s disease. Researchers from the University of California at Los Angeles published a report this month in the medical journal Neurology, indicating that when someone sustains a traumatic brain injury (TBI), their risk of suffering from Parkinson’s disease doubles. If you have experienced a head injury or TBI in an accident in Oklahoma, your first course of action should be to contact our personal injury attorneys at AMA Law. Whether your injury was the result of a car accident, a slip and fall, or an accident on another person’s property, our qualified traumatic brain injury lawyers can help.


    The Neurology head injury study examined data involving more than 1,100 people from 2001 to 2011, 357 of whom had been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. Researchers discovered that those study participants who suffered traumatic brain injuries had twice the risk of developing Parkinson’s disease as the general public. Researchers also observed the effect of pesticide exposure on TBI victims, indicating that those who had a severe head injury and lived in an area with considerable exposure to the pesticide paraquat had a three-times increased risk of being diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. “These environmental factors seem to act together to increase PD risk in a more than additive manner,” the study authors explained.


    A traumatic brain injury may result from a blow to the head, a jolt, or even a simple bump on the head, often leading to concussion. Injuries such as these are classified as head injuries that result in a disruption of the normal function of the brain. Parkinson’s disease is a debilitating brain disorder that leads to tremors and causes problems with movement, coordination and walking. Symptoms of Parkinson’s disease may be mild at first, but as the nerve cells in the brain that make dopamine are slowly destroyed, that part of the brain is no longer able to send messages properly. Because nerve cells in the brain use dopamine to help control muscle movement, this destruction leads to a loss of muscle function that worsens over time.


    Estimates from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) indicate that nearly 1.7 million people suffer from a TBI every year, and this type of brain injury accounts for 31% of all injury-related deaths in the United States. The side effects of a TBI can include memory loss, cognitive problems, depression, loss of senses, anxiety, and, according to this study, possibly even Parkinson’s disease. A study published in September also found a connection between traumatic brain injuries and the development of Alzheimer’s disease. One of the most important steps to take after suffering a severe head injury or TBI is ensuring that you have access to the medical care and financial assistance you require. In some cases, this may call for a personal injury lawsuit to be filed against the person or party responsible for your head injury. If you sustained a TBI in any kind of Oklahoma accident that resulted from the negligence of another person or party, contact our personal injury lawyers at AMA Law immediately to discuss your legal options.

    Request a free consultation

    (405) 607-8757