AANS Neurosurgeon | Volume 26, Number 4, 2017


Anemia Negatively Affects Recovery from Traumatic Brain Injuries

Finding lays foundation for new treatment protocols for anemic patients

Patients who have been diagnosed with anemia have reduced oxygen flow to vital organs throughout the body. Because of this, researchers from the University of Missouri school of medicine found evidence that having anemia can negatively influence the outcome of patients who have suffered from a traumatic brain injury. Also, according to their study, approximately half the patients who were hospitalized for this type of injury were anemic. “More research is needed to develop treatment protocols for anemic patients with traumatic brain injuries,” said N. Scott Litofsky, MD, chief of the MU School of Medicine’s Division of Neurological Surgery and lead author of the study. “Anemia occurs when there is a shortage of red blood cells, which cause reduced oxygen flow to vital organs throughout the body. There has been a lack of consensus among physicians regarding the relationship of anemia and traumatic brain injuries on a patient’s health. Because of this uncertainty, treatment protocols are unclear and inconsistent. Our observational study found that a patient’s outcome is worse when he or she is anemic.” To read more, click here.


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