High Definition Fiber Tracking

The purpose of this study is to evaluate High Definition Fiber Tracking (HDFT), an MRI-based diagnostic method. Imaging results will be compared to neuropsychological testing results to potentially 'map' areas of damage following a TBI. The study will rely on paper/pencil, computer and MRI-based measures to examine the effects of TBI at various stages post-injury. The University of Pittsburgh is the lead institution in this multicenter study, which is being conducted in conjunction with other leading research institutions and hospitals around the country.

TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury) involves damage to only relatively small amounts of tissue caused by impact forces of a concussion in distributed locations. We note these small percentage injuries can cause extensive physical and functional impairment, just as losing one connection in the millions of connections in a lap top computer can make the computer non-functional. In the brain, we need to be able to comprehensively scan the cables of the mind for small breaks that alter human function. HDFT is the first method to provide more accurate detection of fiber breaks during the acute stage of TBI.

This study involves the participation of both TBI and control participants ages 18-70. The study will examine 540 injured and uninjured brains over the course of several years in order to gain a full understanding of issues associated with TBI. The study procedures include a MRI scan and neuropsychological testing.

For more information about this study please call Clinical Trials Information at 412-647-3685.