White Matter Integrity in Pediatric Closed Head Injury: The Relationship Between Callosal Area and Interhemispheric Transfer Time
Almost one million children suffer head injuries in the United States every year. These injuries often result in emotional, social, and cognitive deficits and delays. However, very few studies have investigated brain morphology and function in pediatric TBI. Although the corpus callosum is commonly damaged in traumatic brain injury, very few studies have examined this brain structure in pediatric TBI despite its prominent role in hemispheric communication and integration. The current study addresses this gap in the literature by investigating the relationship between white matter integrity (callosal area) and interhemispheric transfer time (IHTT) in pediatric closed head injury. Participants included 21 children and adolescents with TBI and 22 age-matched healthy controls. Results indicated that IHTT was significantly slower in the TBI group compared to controls. However, almost half of the TBI participants demonstrated normal IHTT based upon the control group mean IHTT. Four of five TBI participants with visible callosal lesions belonged to the group with normal IHTT. Although a significant relationship between IHTT and TBI was found, this study indicates that children and adolescents with TBI can demonstrate normal IHTT, even with callosal lesions macroscopically detectable on midsagittal magnetic resonance imaging. IHTT was also found to become significantly faster with age, but no significant relationship was found between IHTT and total or regional callosal area.
Marion, Sarah DeBoard
Brain-damaged children, Psychological testing, Pediatric neurology, Corpus callosum, Pediatric neurology
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