Typically, a maritime worker who has suffered traumatic brain injury on a vessel may be advised to undergo a CT scan, in order to determine the presence and severity of the injury. However, such workers may have greater benefits if they’re put through an MRI. According to new research, a hospital MRI may be much more beneficial in predicting the long-term prognosis for brain injury patients, than CT scans.

The results of the study were published in the Annals of Neurology recently. About 135 people, who had suffered mild brain injuries over the past couple of years, were analyzed as part of the study. All of these patients had received CT scans as soon as they were admitted into the hospital. Out of the 135 patients, 99 had CT scans that showed no typical signs of an injury.

About a week later, all patients were administered an MRI. In more than 25% of these cases, the MRI scans showed signs of focal lesions, or sports with microscopic bleeding. These focal lesions, however, were not present in the CT scans of these patients.

The identification of the focal lesions was very beneficial for doctors in helping predict whether the patient was likely to suffer long-term neurological problems as a result of the brain injury.

Not every maritime worker who suffers a brain injury after a fall accident on a vessel will suffer long-term psychological problems. However, in 15% of cases, this does happen. Therefore, it is very important that maritime workers’ brain injuries be diagnosed as specifically as possible.

The maritime lawyers at Schechter, Shaffer & Harris, L.L.P., Accident & Injury Lawyers represent persons injured in maritime accidents in the Gulf of Mexico and across Texas.