Are Head Injuries Connected to Alzheimer's Disease?

Lynchburg, VA- A history of brain injury may be a risk factor for Alzheimer's Disease. One Lynchburg physician believes more study is needed to look at the risk factors for concussion, traumatic brain injury and a link to Alzheimer's Disease. "There's been one major study that was published last year that shows that the number of beta amyloid plaque formations in patients with TBIs or concussions is about 18% higher, than even a normal person," said Carl R. Hoegerl, D.O., Chair and Associate Professor of Neurology at Liberty University's College of Osteopathic Medicine. The study Hoegerl is referring to was released in December of 2013 in the medical journal of Neurology, which is the medical journal of American Academy of Neurology.

Hoegerl says the increased attention being brought to head injuries by the NFL and the increasing number of traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) that combat veterans have sustained are causing the medical community to pay more serious attention to the risk factors and future complications that brain trauma can present. "We're realizing that these guys are at risk for developing. depression and other problems long after they've had the injury. And these things that we used to brush off as nothing are really turning out to be something."