BIRC Fall '16 Newsletter - News, Resources & Research Highlights
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News, Resources, and Research Highlights from the
Brain Injury Research Center
The Brain Injury Research Center of Mount Sinai conducts cutting-edge research,which focuses on addressing the challenges of living with traumatic brain injury (TBI). We seek to gain information about life after TBI and to create and improve treatments for those living with a brain injury.
5 East 98th Street, B-15
New York, NY 10029
(212) 241-5152


TBI in the News
Spotlight: One Survivor's Experience Living with TBI
Publication Highlights
Research Study Updates
TBI in the News

FDA Approval of Two New Computerized Tests to Evaluate Patients Post TBI

Two new computerized tests that can help clinicians evaluate a patient’s cognitive function after a suspected brain injury or concussion have received FDA approval: The Immediate Post-Concussion Assessment and Cognitive Testing (ImPACT) & ImPact Pediatric tests. These tests may help determine the best and most appropriate treatment after a TBI. 

Concussion Researchers Spark Hope With Step Forward in Diagnosing CTE During Life

Drs. Gordon and Dams-O’Connor collaborated with other researchers at Mount Sinai to evaluate a novel neuroimaging modality which may help to diagnose chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) during life.


Association of Traumatic Brain Injury With Late-Life Neurodegenerative Conditions and Neuropathological Findings

A large research study conducted by scientists at UW Medicine and our Co-Director Dr. Kristen Dams-O’Connor found a link between TBI and Parkinson’s disease. The study did not find similar associations between TBI and Alzheimer’s or dementia. The findings were published in JAMA Neurology; Time magazine wrote a piece about the research in July.

Football Alters the Brains of Kids as Young as 8

A recent imaging study shows that football players aged 8 to 13 who have had no symptoms of a concussion still show changes associated with traumatic brain injury. The Atlantic has put together a review of the article, describing possible repercussions of the research. You can also view the research findings in Radiology Today.

A 15,000th Participant Milestone

TBI Model Systems National Database has enrolled its 15,000th participant! The TBI Model System at Mount Sinai (one of 16 U.S. centers) is part of a national effort to improve TBI care through research. With the support of our participants, we continue to gain more knowledge to help advance our understanding of the lifetime impact of TBI. This project contributes to the creation of evidence-based rehabilitation interventions, as well as clinical practice guidelines that improve the lives of people with TBI. For more information, the Model Systems Knowledge Translation Center has issued a press release.

Thank you to all of our participants who have continued to be a part of this amazing research effort! To see some of your contributions and findings, see the profile of TBI survivors from 2015. 

One Survivor's Experience Living with TBI

Bill Gilroy, an active member of the TBI community, shares his experience of how his life changed after surviving multiple TBIs. This article was printed in an editorial section of the Cape Cod Times in August.

Mount Sinai TBI Support Groups

The Traumatic Brain Injury Support Group is a monthly, in-person meeting for individuals who have suffered from a traumatic brain injury. In this support group, individuals will have the opportunity to talk to other TBI survivors, provide emotional support to help tackle the obstacles of living with a brain injury, make new friends, and learn more about brain injury.
The group is led by Timothy Pruce, the outreach coordinator and TBI advocate for the Brain Injury Research Center, who is also an individual living with brain injury himself.
This group meets the 2nd Wednesday of each month from 2:00pm - 3:00pm in the Brain Injury Research Center at Mount Sinai Medical Center (5 East 98th Street Room B10 New York, NY 10029).
For more information, contact Timothy Pruce at 212-241-5152.

The Women’s Support Group is designed for women ages 18 and older who have had a brain injury of any kind.This monthly, in-person meeting is a place where women can discuss the challenges they experience after brain injury, as well as learn strategies to help deal with the cognitive and emotional changes that can accompany brain injury.

The group is co-lead by a neuropsychology postdoctoral fellow and Seton Melvin, whose own experience with brain injury motivated her to found the Women’s Support Group at Mount Sinai over 20 years ago.

For more information, contact Dr. Amanda Hahn-Ketter at (212) 241-5250 or at

Carolyn Rocchio Caregivers Webinar: Pooled Special Needs Trust Planning: What Families Need to Know

Wednesday, December 14th, 2016 @ 3 PM EST
Attend the Carolyn Rocchio Caregivers webinar to learn about what a pooled special needs trust is and what advantages it holds. Topics will include:
     -How pooled special needs trusts work
     -How to set up a pooled special needs trust
     -The responsibilities of the trust administrator
     -The types of trusts that are available
     -How Medicaid and SSI benefits are protected
     -How funds from a trust can be used
     -How a pooled special needs trust differs from an ABLE account

For Professionals: 
Robert Sbordone Memorial Lecture on mTBI and Concussion: When Patients Don’t Get Better: What are We Missing?

Tuesday, December 6th, 2016 @ 3 PM EST

Most people who have sustained a concussion/mTBI return to normal work, school, and pre-injury life. Some individuals, however, experience continuing symptoms incongruent to the initial diagnosis. What contributes to this disconnect? Can these symptoms find resolution?

Dr. Jonathan Silver, Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at NYU School of Medicine, presents.

Traumatic brain injury as a risk factor for Alzheimer's disease: current knowledge and future directions.

A recent scoping review published by four members of the BIRC staff summarizes clinical research from the past 10 years that evaluated the relationship between TBI and Alzheimer's disease. The review discusses results from 11 recent studies that examined if there was any association between TBI and Alzheimer’s disease. Implications and possible future directions for research are touched upon in the article.

ACRM Highlights

During the first week of November, our staff traveled to Chicago to present research findings and learn from other professionals in the TBI and Rehabilitation Medicine fields at the Annual Progress in Rehabilitative Research Conference put on by the American College of Rehabilitation Medicine. This year, our group showed the strength of our research center with 12 presentations touching on TBI rehabilitation, health outcomes, publication health implications, fatigue, and our TBI brain bank. To read more about the posters, click on the title of the abstracts below.


Access, Barriers, and Health Care Quality after Brain Injury: Insiders' Perspectives
Cognition and Mood in a Clinically Fatigued Sample of Individuals with Traumatic Brain Injury
One-year Test-Retest Reliability of Collegiate Athletes' Self-Report of Traumatic Brain Injury
Outcomes Associated with High and Low Chronic Disease Burden in Adults with TBI
Patterns of Exercise Participation in Individuals with Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
Prevalence and Predictors of Tobacco Smoking 1-year After Traumatic Brain Injury: A VA TBI Model Systems Study
Recruiting for a Traumatic Brain Injury Brain Donation Study

Texas Juvenile Justice Traumatic Brain Injury Screening Project Part I
Texas Juvenile Justice Traumatic Brain Injury Screening Project Part II


Creating Guidelines for TBI Rehabilitation: Similarities and Differences in Evidence Synthesis
Creating Guidelines for TBI Rehabilitation: Dissemination and Knowledge Translation to the Target Audiences
Health and Aging after TBI: Current Knowledge, Remaining Questions, and Healthy Next Steps

Late Effects of TBI (LE-TBI) Consortium: A Multidisciplinary Team to Advance Understanding of Traumatic Brain Injury Outcomes

Management of Post-TBI Fatigue with Light Exposure
Many people who have sustained a TBI experience fatigue and trouble getting a sufficient amount of sleep. This particular study is for people who have had a traumatic brain injury (TBI) and are experiencing fatigue in their daily life as a result.
We are trying to see if two different types of light, red light and white light, can help improve people’s fatigue, sleep, mood, and thinking abilities.
If you are interested, please call Lauren Nelson at (212)-241-5190 or email her at

Late Effects of Traumatic Brain Injury (LE-TBI)

Late Effects of Traumatic Brain Injury (LE-TBI)
The LE-TBI Project aims to learn more about the long term effects of TBI in the general population. This study is unique in that it involves brain banking - traumatic brain injury has never been studied in the general population with brain autopsy as a major focus.
All participants involved in LE-TBI at Mount Sinai will participate in:
       • an assessment of their cognitive, emotional, and
         behavioral functioning
       • an MRI scan
       • a blood draw
Participants will be asked regardless of their age, gender, or health condition, to consider brain donation and to make their wishes known.
If you are interested, please call Jeanne McPhee at (212)-241-2119 or email her at

TBI and Health in Older Adults: An Exploratory

We are seeking people who had a traumatic brain injury (TBI), are at least 1 year post injury, and were hospitalized for this injury.
Interested individuals will have the opportunity to participate in either 1 or 2 interviews designed to learn more about brain injury and aging. Interviews can be completed over the phone, online via e-mail, as a hard-copy in the mail, or in person, and will include the following:
      • a brief test of your thinking abilities
      • questions about your health & functioning after your brain injury.
Compensation will be provided for your time.
If you are interested, please call Elsa Lee at (212)-241-9551 or email her at

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Brain Injury Research Center · One Gustave L Levy Place, Box 1163 · New York, NY 10029 · USA

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