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Adam Reborn: A Family Guide to Surviving a Traumatic Brain Injury

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TBI Recovery Team Is Here To Help

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Dear Friends, do not just sit in the waiting rooms. Get to know your therapists. Listen to their skilled advice. Be involved with your loved one's therapies. Being a coach can help your loved one more than just being a spectator. - Alex.

 physical therapy


 Rehabilitation for TBI can be a long, slow and difficult journey for the person and his or her family. The healing of any physical injury takes time but when the brain has been damaged, recovery involves far more than just rebuilding tissue. TBI survivors frequently have to relearn simple physical skills like brushing their teeth, dressing themselves, bathing, etc. Occupational therapy is often a key component of a person's recovery plan and has the best effect when reinforced by supportive family members.

Wherever the person is treated ' at home, in a nursing home, through a hospital out-patient rehabilitation clinic, or in an independent living center ' he or she will do best with the support of a team consisting of healthcare professionals and family members. Working together, they can find the best living arrangement for the TBI survivor and provide ongoing healthcare, and perhaps an appropriate mentoring program. In addition to day to day caregivers, this team will likely include:

Physiatrist ' a physician who specializes in physical medicine and rehabilitation

Physical Therapist ' a professionalwho evaluates the person's physical capabilities and develops a program to help them walk, improve their balance, and increase their mobility skills.

Occupational Therapist ' a professional who accesses and works on a patient's visual, cognitive, and perceptual skills. Through OT exercises, basic yet essential skills such as dressing, eating, housework, etc. can be relearned and mastered to help the person recover some of their independence.

Speech and Language Pathologist ' a professional who evaluates the patient's ability to understand the speech of others and express themselves verbally. Enhancing a TBI survivor's communication skills can have a huge impact on their rate of recovery and family dynamics.

Neuropsychologist ' a professional who analyzes and tracks the injured person's ability toproblem solve, put things in sequence, and make rational choices. Based on their findings a course of action is developed to help the TBI survivor overcome or cope with any disabilities.

Social Worker ' a professional who often works with everyone in the family on how to handle the stress and financial burdens they may be facing during this crisis. A social worker also suggests community agencies that could help the family with these challenges.


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Tips For A Better Sleep To Help Refresh Your Brain

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Sleep Helps Protect Your Brain

 1349703174 sleeping-brain

This good feeling may be a result of the anti-inflammtaory effects of sleep.  Chronic brain inflammation appears to contribute to cellular deterioration that can lead to Alzheimer's disease.  Getting a good night's sleep has a positive impact on that inflammatory process and may explain why people who sleep well regularly often look younger and have more energy. 

Scientific evidence tells us that actually sleeping on our problems is an efficient way to solve them.  During sleep, our brain's memory centers are busy consolidating recall for more effective memory when we're awake.  Sleeping well is an important way to improve your memory ability and may lower risk for cognitive decline.

 The following are a few strategies to consider if you're having trouble falling or staying asleep through the night.

  • Stay up during the day.  A daytime nap can be invigorating, but if you already suffer from sleeplessness at night, try not to nap so you'll feel more fatigued at bedtime.
  • Avoid evening liquids.  After dinner, try not to drink large quantities of water or other drinks.  A full bladder can awaken you during the night and you may have trouble getting back to sleep.
  • Stay mellow in the evening.  Watching lively nighttime sports or an exciting movie thriller tends to hype some people up, making it harder for them to fall asleep.
  • Avoid caffeine at night.  Whether it's from tea, coffee, soda or even a chocolate bar, caffeine can keep us awake, so avoid it in the evenings.  Try to skip coffee entirely in the late afternoon and evening.
  • Maintain good sleep habits.  It helps to get into bed at the same time each night.  Try to skip watching TV, eating, or even reading a book.  Simply turn out the light and take a few moments to get settled.  If you are not asleep after 20 minutes, get out of bed and do something else until you feel tired again.  Once you go back to bed, get settled, and give it another 20 minutes.  Every time you get into bed to sleep, try remaining still and focus on slow, steady breathing.
  • ( 
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College Football To Introduce New Style Helmet To Cut Down On Potential Concussions

Posted by on in TBI

padded helmet


When the University of South Carolina opens preseason football practice Friday night, the plan is to have the Gamecocks, including defensive star Jadeveon Clowney, outfitted in Guardian Caps. The padded shells, made of polyurethane fabric, are designed to fit over helmets and reduce impacts to the head.

There's controversy whether the caps violate helmet certification standards. But South Carolina tried 32 of them on linemen in the spring, liked them and bought 75 more to go team-wide for practice, says athletic trainer Clint Haggard.

"I've talked to our team physicians and discussed all that stuff, and I've talked to a bunch of people around the country," says Haggard. "And we're still going to use them. ... It seems like it will help."

The Guardian Caps have compartments padded with foam rubber that are arranged on top of the helmets, and Hanson says using these compartments dissipates energy better than a solid shell. One issue is whether soft shells might stick together or be more easily grabbed and cause neck injuries. Hanson says his caps "just slip off of each other."


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Wii Video Games Can Assist Therapists With Stroke/TBI Recovery

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IMG 20130731 161806 683


Recreational/Occupational Therapy for Stroke or TBI victims can be found with the Wii style video games. Therapists can have patients use weakened limbs to better incorporate hand-eye coordination. The games are "fun" to play, thus having patients more eager for therapy...which can be benefitial in transferring over to day to day fucnctions...such as standing, or using their hands for openeing doors, turning on lights or grooming. The fast moving/split second decisions made while playing a game of Tennis, for instance, helps with restoring quick cognetive decision making.

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Snake Bite Causes Brain Hemorrhaging

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Golden Lancehead 2

Welcome to Ilha de Queimada Grande, a 110-acre uninhabited island off the coast of Brazil, but locals refer to it as "snake island." And with good reason! The island is home to the Golden Lancehead snake, a super poisonous reptile whose bite causes bleeding orifices, brain hemorrhaging, and kidney failure. Yikes! Researchers claim there is one snake for every square meter of land, which makes the island so dangerous that the Brazilian Navy doesn't allow humans to even go there.  

( - 2013)

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Jahvid Best Released By the Detroit Lions Due To History Of Multiple Concussions

Posted by on in TBI

javhid best

The Lions formally announced the release of the fourth-year running back in a press release on the team's official website. Detroit general manager Martin Mayhew released a statement in accordance with Best's dismissal, applauding the young man's work ethic during his time with the franchise.

While salary-cap ramifications undoubtedly played a role in Best's release, it's his inability to stay on the field that was the ultimate impetus for this move. A former first-round pick by Detroit in 2010, Best burst onto the scene with 555 yards rushing and 487 yards receiving as a rookie, and was well on his way to a fine sophomore season before the injury bug bit him.

The slight back, who had a history of concussions dating back to his collegiate days at Cal, suffered his second concussion of the 2011 season against the San Fransisco 49ers on Oct. 16, 2011 and was placed on season-ending injured reserve.

He hasn't played a down of organized football since. Best was expected to come back to the Lions' lineup at the beginning of the 2012 season and participated in the team's OTAs and other activities. However, doctors never felt comfortable clearing him to play due to post-concussion symptoms. Best was kept on the physically unable to perform list, a move that effectively ended his season in November.

(Bleacher Report - 2013)


(Dear Friends, Adam played football in high school and remains an avid NFL fan. It can be a very demanding and punishing game, however, if family or relatives of yours play the game...make sure they listen to coaches regarding proper tackling techniques, do not launch forward using the helmet as a weapon and report any head injury to a physician.)


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NFL Considering Neck Strength As An Area To Reduce Concussions and Promote TBI Recovery

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The Baltimore Ravens won Super Bowl XLVII with one of the NFL’s most loaded rosters.

But what good is talent if players can’t stay on the field or quickly recover from injuries?

Ravens strength coach Bob Rogucki delivered a reminder of that last week when speaking at the third-annual Football Strength Clinic in Cincinnati. The event focused on ways in which neck strength for male and female athletes who play high school, college or pro sports can be developed in an effort to reduce concussion risk.

While not as publicized as other NFL anti-concussion measures, there is scientific research that shows a muscular neck likely defuses the potentially damaging forces sometimes generated when a player is hit in the head. The larger the “cylinder,” the better the chance that the neck will serve as a shock-absorber to lessen stress placed on the skull.

The NFL isn’t convinced enough yet by existing neck-concussion research to implement a mandatory training protocol for all 32 teams. In a statement to FOX Sports, the NFL head, neck and spine committee says every team’s strength and conditioning program emphasizes “neck muscles in one form or another.” But how much importance neck training carries in a weight program varies from coach to coach.

Incoming NFL players are a different story. Neck strength is a weak point among many of the college prospects who enter the league each year. That could lead to concussion problems or greater risk for them at the NFL level.

( - 2013)

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Brain Implants May Assist with TBI Recovery

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For 15 years, people have been having brain implants to provide deep brain stimulation to treat epilepsy and Parkinson's disease -- a reported 80,000 people have now had such devices placed in their brains. So many of the hurdles have already been overcome -- particularly the "yuck factor" and the fear factor.

"It's now commonly accepted that humans will have electrodes put in them -- it's done for epilepsy, deep brain stimulation, (that has made it) easier for investigative research, it's much more acceptable now than five to 10 years ago," Hampson says.

Much of the work that remains now is in shrinking down the electronics.

Rob Hampson, associate professor of physiology and pharmacology at Wake Forest University, agrees. "We keep pushing forward, every time I put an estimate on it, it gets shorter and shorter."

The scientists -- who bring varied skills to the table, including mathematical modeling and psychiatry -- believe they have cracked how long-term memories are made, stored and retrieved and how to replicate this process in brains that are damaged, particularly by stroke or localized injury.

"Right now it's not a device, it's a fair amount of equipment,"Hampson says. "We're probably looking at devices in the five to 10 year range for human patients."

The ultimate goal in memory research would be to treat Alzheimer's Disease but unlike in stroke or localized brain injury, Alzheimer's tends to affect many parts of the brain, especially in its later stages, making these implants a less likely option any time soon.



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George Lucas Predicts/Imagines Our Brains Controlling Future Entertainment

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Looking into their crystal ball, George Lucas and Stephen Spielberg predicted the imminent arrival of a radically different entertainment landscape, including pricey movie tickets, a vast migration of content to video-on-demand and even programmable dreams.

But Spielberg, looking farther ahead, said he thinks the real shift will come when game controllers are obsolete and games are controlled by Kinect-like devices that completely immerse the player in the story. “I believe need to get rid of the proscenium,” Spielberg said. “We’re never going to be totally immersive as long as we’re looking at a square, whether it’s a movie screen or whether it’s a computer screen. We’ve got to get rid of that and we’ve got to put the player inside the experience, where no matter where you look you’re surrounded by a three-dimensional experience. That’s the future.”

The most out-there suggestion for the future of entertainment came from Lucas, who sees brain implants within the relatively near future. He noted such implants are already being used to control artificial limbs; they just haven’t been used for entertainment yet.

“The next step is to be able to control your dreams,” he said. “You’ll just tap into a different part of your brain. You’re just going to put a hat on or plug into the computer and create your own world. … We’ll be able to do the dream thing 10, 15 years from now. It’s not some pie-in-the-sky thing.”

( - 2013)

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Brutal Beating Leaves Man With Hope For TBI Recovery

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A California jury has awarded nearly $58 million to a 43-year-old house painter left brain damaged and deformed after a security guard crushed his skull during a beating outside a Los Angeles-area bar.

"His skull is like a pie with 25% cut out of it," attorney Federico Sayre said at a news conference Monday.

Doctors had to removed part of Antonio Lopez Chaj's brain and skull after the April 2010 beating at La Barra Latina in Torrance. He can no longer speak, needs help walking and requires 24-hour care.

Sayre said an unlicensed, untrained security guard with DGSP Security and Patrol Service beat Chaj with a baton or metal bar, kicked him in the head eight times and bashed his skull on the pavement four times. Chaj was attacked after he tried to intervene in a fight between one of his two nephews and the bar manager.



 (Dear Friends, once again a horrific beating (as in Bryan Stow's case) has resulted in a physical tragedy. Hopefully, with therapy and the guidance of friends and faith, TBI recovey may come quickly. - Alex)


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Does the Brain Control Food Addiction?

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Have you ever craved a piece of chocolate? Or felt the lure of a hot slice of pizza? And been convinced that the force responsible wasn't your stomach hoping to quell hunger but your brain, desperately seeking to satisfy something more like an addiction?

A new study provides the strongest evidence yet that certain foods trigger addictive behavior just as drugs can.

Nicotine is addictive. So are drugs like cocaine and heroin. All can rewire the brain to crave the progressively elusive "high" or satisfaction that these agents produce. The desire is so strong that it overtakes all reason and need to satisfy it becomes an all-consuming mission, at the expense of your physical, emotional and social health.

Some would argue that certain foods hold the same power over people, monkeying with the brain's normal appetite system and resetting the satisfaction threshold so it's always just out of reach, meaning you can never eat enough.

"The concept of food addiction is very provocative and rightly so,"says Dr. David Ludwig, the director of the New Balance Foundation Obesity Center at Boston Children's Hospital. "Unlike drugs of abuse, food is necessary for survival."

"Prior research has shown the tasty high calorie foods can trigger the pleasure center of the brain. That supports the idea of food addiction, but the significance of those studies has been challenged because they typically compare grossly different foods like cheesecake versus boiled vegetables," says Ludwig. "Yes, certain foods are tasty and enjoyable, but is that so different from a audiophile listening to beautiful music?"

( - Health - 2013)

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"Kill" Comments Back In the NFL - TBI Recovery Possible Concern

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Mario Williams is back-tracking on attributing "kill" as a word Buffalo Bills coordinator Mike Pettine has used in describing defensive philosophy with his players.

In a series of messages the defensive end posted on his Twitter account Friday afternoon, Williams clarified that he wasn't quoting Pettine directly.

"Just to clarify a choice of words I used: The phrase `kill them' has never been said by Coach Pet or any of my coaches/teammates," Williams wrote. "I said it as a figure of speech from my `perspective' not literally or any actual intention."

Williams' posts came a day after he raised eyebrows in describing Pettine's aggressive approach to defense.

"He usually says `Kill them or hurt them," Williams said, Thursday, following the final practice of the team's three-day mandatory minicamp.

Player safety has become a hot-button issue in the NFL. The league is facing concussion-related lawsuits filed by thousands of former players.

The league is also sensitive to coaches or players using the words "kill" or "hurt" in the aftermath of the New Orleans Saints' bounty scandal two years ago.

In a tape made by filmmaker Sean Pamphilon of Williams addressing Saints players, the coordinator was heard using metaphors such as, "kill the head and the body will die."

(  -  NFL 2013)

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Summer Alert - Part Two - TBI Recovery

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(Dear Friends, please watch out for loved ones this active summer season.  Any head injury or fall should be observed carefully and confirmed with medical treatment.  Above all!!!  Do not let your loved ones or friends "sleep it off."  Closed head injuries can be fatal! - Alex)


See a doctor immediately if the person experiences:


  • Increased drowsiness
  • Irritability or restlessness
  • Loss of strength in the hands or feet
  • Persistent vomiting
  • Worsening headache 



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Summer Alert - Part One - TBI Recovery

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(Dear Friends, with summer quickly approaching...families are really on the go! This means vacations, sporting activities and kids out of school. Please, be careful with all sporting events, and make sure helmets are worn at all times! - Alex)

What are the Leading Causes of TBI?


The leading causes of TBI are:                                        new pie

  • Falls (35.2%);
  • Motor vehicle – traffic (17.3%);
  • Struck by/against events (16.5%); and                      
  • Assaults (10%).1


  • Falls continued to be the leading cause of TBI (35.2%) in the United States. Falls cause half (50%) of the TBIs among children aged 0 to 14 years and 61% of all TBIs among adults aged 65 years and older.

Motor Vehicle-Traffic Crashes1

  • Among all age groups, motor vehicle crashes and traffic-related incidents were the second leading cause of TBI (17.3%) and resulted in the largest percentage of TBI-related deaths (31.8%).

Struck By/Against Events1

  • Struck by/against events, which include colliding with a moving or stationary object, were the second leading cause of TBI among children aged 0 to 14 years, with 25%.


  • Assaults produced 10% of TBIs in the general population; they accounted for only 2.9% in children aged 0 to 14 years and 1% in adults aged 65 years old and older.

Who is at Risk?

  • Approximately 18% of all TBI-related emergency department visits involved children aged 0 to 4 years.
  • Approximately 22% of all TBI-related hospitalizations involved adults aged 75 years and older.
  • Males are more often diagnosed with a TBI (59%).

Blasts are a leading cause of TBI for active duty military personnel in war zones.2 CDC estimates of TBI do not include injuries seen at U.S. Department of Defense or U.S. Veterans Health Administration Hospitals.



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More Baseball (MLB) Violence Leads to Possible TBI

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new york yankees

A Yankees fan named Matt Fortese was assaulted at Oriole Park at Camden Yards during the Orioles-Nationals game last Wednesday, according to multiple reports. 

A woman attending the game with him told the Baltimore Sun, that two men had been heckling Fortese because he was wearing a Yankees hat. Fortese, 25, approached the hecklers after one of the men allegedly threw beer at the couple. Fortese then was punched in side of the head, police told the Sun. The punch sent Fortese over the railing, causing his head to hit the concrete approximately five feet below.

Nathan Steelman, an off-duty state trooper, was sitting a few sections away from where Fortese fell. He ran over to help Fortese, who was not breathing and bleeding badly from his head, according to CNN.

"I think instinct kind of kicked in," Steelman told CNN. He would later realize that the man he assisted was a childhood friend. "I didn't know it was Matt at the time."

The Sun reported on Saturday that Fortese suffered severe head trauma and a skull fracture and was in serious condition at Maryland Shock Trauma Center.

Police told ABC 2 News that the two men were arrested and charged with aggrivated assualt.



Dear Friends, why is it in this day and age that we can't have friendly sports competition? We all love our local/special teams.  Some of the fun in sports was/is joking and enjoying the game with the other team's fans. As Adam has just stated..."when did going to these extremes/actions occur? Is it only alchohol related? Is there no longer any respect in society for others?" This beating mirrors the highly publicized assault of Bryan Stow, paramedic, whose only fault for suffering a TBI, was wearing his local team SF Giants jersey, at a LA Dodgers home game. - Alex

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TBI Recovery/ Amusement Park Fun Rides

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May to September is prime time for fun at the amusement park. From frightening news reports to personal YouTube videos, there is no shortage of amusement-ride scares. But a new study has found that it's not always the biggest and fastest rides we should fear.

The study, in the journal Clinical Pediatrics, tracked injuries on all kinds of rides: 4,400 per year -- up to 20 a day. When researchers looked at emergency records on which the type of ride was recorded, roller coasters accounted for 10.1 percent, bumper cars 3.9 percent.

But carousels accounted for 20.9 percent -- which might explain why one third of kids injured were five or younger.

The most common kind of accident was falling.

(  - News)


(Dear Friends, I don't think many of us anticipate an injury occuring on a carousel. The kids are laughing and giggling and riding their favorite animals. But they lean over to wave to parents or grandparents wanting to take their photo. And the kids buck up back and forth while going up and down. If they are not properly strapped in, they could go sailing/falling off and hit their heads. Carousels do not provide helmets. Please, make sure your child is properly secured and sits up straight.  - Alex)


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Detroit Lions - Titus Young's Brain Injury Leads To Multiple Arrests

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Titus Young is on a downward spiral with his recent spate of arrests. His father is speaking out now out of concern for his son.

Richard Young told the Detroit News that Titus is suffering from a disorder caused by his brain being compressed into the front of his skull. Richard also said his son hasn’t been the same since a concussion suffered during his rookie season, however the Detroit Lions never reported such an injury.

“His mind is not capable enough to go out and deal with society because of this situation,” Richard Young said.

This comes on the heels of Titus’ latest incident last Friday, when he drove off from his parents’ house in Los Angeles and was later arrested after allegedly breaking into a home in San Clemente.

“We knew that something had happened to him or he was locked up again,” Richard Young said.

Titus Young has apparently been prescribed medication for his health issues, but he hasn’t been taking it regularly.

“He’s not dealing with it the way he should be,” Richard Young said. “If the judge gives him a court order, then maybe he’ll get the help he needs.”

(MSN.FoxSports/Laces Out)

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High School Athletes Ignore Concussion Symptoms - "Don't Want To Look Weak"

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Concussions continue to be a major concern in athletics. However, a recent study shows many local high school athletes ignore concussion symptoms.

The Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center interviewed 120 local high school football players in the summer of 2012. The report showed that the majority would continue to play despite having symptoms of a concussion.

The study found over 90% of these athletes are educated and know the consequences of continuing to play through a concussion, but the problem is that over 50% responded that they continue to play with a headache sustained from an injury.

Moeller senior Shane Jones is no stranger to hard hits on the football field. Next year, he's continuing his career at Michigan State. Luckily for him, he's avoided any concussions during his career he says mainly because he listens to his coaches.

"You might only miss one play but it's just good enough to come off the field and get checked out," said Jones.

The recent study shows that only 54% of players indicated they would "always or sometimes report symptoms of a concussion to their coach. Jones says he's not completely surprised to hear this.

"I think it's just the feeling of being out there and being with your teammates and wanting to fight through because you don't want to seem as some people say soft by saying you're coming off the field by saying your hurt in some way," said Jones.

( Athletes)

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Not A Runny Nose - But Leaking Brain Fluid

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One Arizona man thought he had year-round allergies when his nose continued to run. He was shocked to find out after years of suffering, his runny nose was actually his brain leaking fluid, FOX 10 reported. 

Joe Nagy first noticed it when he sat up to get out of bed.

"Brooop! This clear liquid dribbled out of my nose like tears out of your eyes. I go what is this?," he told the TV station.

And, he added, the symptom continued to worsen over time.

Nagy tried allergy medicine, which didn't help. He said he had tissues on-hand all the time. 

He still remembers the embarrassing moments when he couldn't get to the tissues in time, like when he was picking up blueprints for his model airplanes.

Fed up, Nagy went to a specialist, who tested the fluid that was dripping out of his nose. That's how he discovered it was actually brain fluid.

"I was scared to death if you want to know the truth," he said.

The membrane surrounding Nagy's brain had a hole in it, causing the brain fluid to leak.

"You don't really think about it, but our brains are really just above our noses all of the time," said Dr. Peter Nakaji, a neurosurgeon at  Barrow Neurological Institute.

Nagy was ready to have brain surgery to fix the leak, but then he developed a near-deadly case of meningitis and the fluid became infected.

Eventually, Nagy's infection cleared up, and he was able to have the surgery. Nakaji explained to FOX 10 how the surgery is done: A needle is inserted through the nose and a bit of glue patches the hole. There is no cutting involved.

Nagy said he's planning on starting a new hobby: Building a sailboat called the Great Pelican. He's confident it won't leak.

 ( Health 2013)
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Our Brains Help Control Love

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Falling in love can wreak havoc on your body. Your heart races, your tummy gets tied up in knots, and you're on an emotional roller coaster, feeling deliriously happy one minute and anxious and desperate the next.

Research shows that these intense, romantic feelings come from the brain.

In one small study, researchers looked at magnetic resonance images of the brains of 10 women and seven men who claimed to be deeply in love. The length of their relationships ranged from one month to less than two years. Participants were shown photographs of their beloved, and photos of a similar-looking person.

The brains of the smitten participants reacted to photos of their sweethearts, producing emotional responses in the same parts of the brain normally involved with motivation and reward.

"Intense passionate love uses the same system in the brain that gets activated when a person is addicted to drugs," said study co-author Arthur Aron, a psychologist at the State University of New York at Stony Brook.

In other words, you start to crave the person you're in love with like a drug.


Romantic love is a primitive response

Experts have said that romantic love is one of the most powerful emotions a person can have. Humans' brains have been wired to choose a mate, and we humans become motivated to win over that mate, sometimes going to extremes to get their attention and affection.

"You can feel happy when you're in love, but you can also feel anxious," said Aron's co-author, Lucy Brown, a neuroscientist at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York. "The other person becomes a goal in life," essentially, a prize.

Brown said that the reward part of the brain, also dubbed the pleasure center, is an essential part of the brain needed to survive.

"It helps us recognize when something feels good," she said.

The drive to feel good around your intended mate may even be more powerful thanthe drive for sex, Brown said.

( - 2012)

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