Baby Hit by Softball in Iowa Has Fractured Skull, Brain Bleeds

Baby Hit by Softball in Iowa Has Fractured Skull, Brain Bleeds


 A 7-week-old baby hit by a softball is being treated for skull fractures and brain bleeds; the injury occurred during a game in which her father played in northeastern Iowa.

Authorities say the overthrown softball struck McKenna Hovenga and her mom, Kassy, as they watched the game Wednesday in Shell Rock, some 95 miles northeast of Des Moines, The Associated Press said. McKenna’s father, Lee Hovenga, was in the game.

McKenna was taken to a local hospital then flown to St. Mary’s Hospital at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. > >> read more ...

Runny Nose? Brain Leak, Doctors Finally Determine

Runny Nose? Brain Leak, Doctors Finally Determine


A woman’s ongoing runny nose turned out to be a brain leak, doctors finally determined years after the symptoms started. 

Kendra Jackson and her doctors thought she had bad allergies, she told KETV 7 in Omaha, Nebraska. She said she couldn’t sleep at night and carried tissues with her everywhere.

After developing frequent headaches, Jackson was finally diagnosed with a cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) leak, in which the liquid around the brain escapes through a hole or tear in the skull and drains into the ears and nose, Johns Hopkins Medicine said. > >> read more ...

Woman’s Brain Implant Shut Down by Lightning Strike

Woman’s Brain Implant Shut Down by Lightning Strike


A lightning strike that hit a woman’s apartment in Slovenia shut down her brain implant in addition to destroying both her TV and air conditioner. 

The device was not destroyed like the others, according to U.S. News and World Report, but the woman noticed about an hour later that her neck tremor was returning and realized that the device had shut down. She had to go to the hospital the next day to have it reset.

It was the first report of a brain implant being affected by lightning, and Dusan Flisar of University Medical Centre in Lubljana said the strike might have been fatal if the user had been recharging the device by plugging it in at the time, New Scientist reported. > >> read more ...

Scans Suggest Contact Sports Alter the Brain

Scans Suggest Contact Sports Alter the Brain


There are differences in the brains of athletes who play contact sports and those who play noncontact sports, according to researchers.

But they added that it isn’t clear if these differences are caused by blows to the head because the study only showed an association.

The Indiana University investigators scanned the brains of 21 college football players, 19 college cross-country runners and 11 non-college-level athletes while they did a simple visual task.

Compared to the cross-country runners and non-college athletes, the football players had much more activity in regions of the brain responsible for visual processing, according to the study. > >> read more ...

Too Much Sitting is Bad for Brain: Study

Too Much Sitting is Bad for Brain: Study


There’s been lots of research into how too many hours lounging on chairs and sofas can harm the heart. Now, researchers say all that sitting might be bad for your brain, too.

A new study found that too much time spent sitting was correlated with an unhealthy “thinning” of tissue in a key brain area tied to memory.

And it appears that the link isn’t simply due to the fact that folks who sit for hours each day aren’t exercising — there was something about the act of sitting itself that seemed to be key, the researchers said. > >> read more ...

Losing One Night’s Sleep Raises Alzheimer’s Brain Protein: Study

Losing One Night’s Sleep Raises Alzheimer’s Brain Protein: Study


Losing just one night’s sleep causes an immediate increase in beta-amyloid, proteins in the brain that clump together to form brain plaques characteristic of Alzheimer’s disease, say researchers at the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

While studies have found that acute sleep deprivation causes an increase in beta-amyloid levels in mice, evidence has been less compelling in humans. The new study is the first to show that sleep helps to clear beta-amyloid, a metabolic waste product present in the fluid between brain cells, from the human brain. > >> read more ...

Hard Times Can Accelerate Brain Aging

Hard Times Can Accelerate Brain Aging


Divorce, death in the family, money troubles and serious health problems don’t just stress you out — these negative life events may actually accelerate the aging of your brain, new research suggests.

“We used a new algorithm to predict brain aging after horrible life events — like divorce or death — and negative life events accelerate brain aging by about one-third of a year for each event,” said study lead author Sean Hatton, a project scientist at the University of California, San Diego. > >> read more ...

Dementia: Number and Severity of Brain Injuries Raise Risk, Says Study

Dementia: Number and Severity of Brain Injuries Raise Risk, Says Study


Suffering a traumatic brain injury from a blow to the head boosted dementia risk by 24 percent in a Danish study group of nearly three million people, researchers said Wednesday.

The survey of 36 years’ worth of data — collected from the Danish national patient register — found that the risk of dementia rose with the number and severity of brain injuries, a team wrote in The Lancet Psychiatry, a medical journal.

“Individuals with a history of traumatic brain injury (TBI)… have an increased risk of developing dementia, even decades after the injury,” said study leader Jesse Fann of the University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle. > >> read more ...

Zika Virus Linked to Brain Damage in Infants

Zika Virus Linked to Brain Damage in Infants


The mosquito-borne Zika virus doesn’t just pose a risk to unborn fetuses. Children infected with the Zika virus during infancy could be at risk of experiencing brain damage, according to a new study in primates.

Medical experts have long known that Zika can destroy developing brain tissue when it infects a fetus in the womb. But the new study found rhesus macaques monkeys infected with Zika virus at the age of about one month — which corresponds to about 3 months of age in a child — developed troubling brain and behavioral changes, the Scientist reports. > >> read more ...

Meditation Boosts Brain Long-Term: Study

Meditation Boosts Brain Long-Term: Study


A new study looking at the long-term effects of meditation has found that those who follow the practice can benefit from improvements in their attention for up to seven years.

Led by researchers at the University of California, Davis, Center for Mind and Brain, the study is based on the Shamatha Project, the most comprehensive longitudinal study of intensive meditation to be carried out so far.

The project followed 60 experienced meditators who attended an intensive three-month meditation retreat, attending group meditation sessions twice a day and practicing individually for about six hours a day. > >> read more ...

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