Beyond the burn related injuries that result from electrical trauma, cognitive impairment is common along with alterations in mood (Kym et al., 2015). This is currently believed to be the direct result of structural damage that occurs when the electrical current is relayed to the brain via the spinal cord (Ramati et al., 2009).
Aase, D. M., Fink, J. W., Lee, R. C., Kelley, K. M., & Pliskin, N. H. (2014). Mood and Cognition after Electrical Injury: A Follow-up Study. Archives of Clinical Neuropsychology, 29(2), 125-130. http://acn.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2014/01/05/arclin.act117.abstract
Individuals who have experienced an electrical injury have been reported to demonstrate both acute and delayed cognitive and psychiatric symptoms. The present study assessed 20 electrically injured patients who underwent neuropsychological evaluations twice following their injury. Time since injury, time between assessments, and longitudinal mood changes were evaluated for their potential impact on simple and complex attention outcomes. As an overall group, there was little change over time from low average to average baseline attention/concentration performance. However, results indicated that longitudinal increases in depressive symptoms were consistently associated with poorer performance on a measure of simple and complex attention. Loss of consciousness, litigation status, baseline injury status (acute vs. post-acute), and time between evaluations were not significant predictors of changes in cognitive performance. Implications for the treatment of comorbid psychiatric issues and for future research on victims of electrical trauma are discussed.
“EM- Electrical Injuries”
Emergency Medicine presentation by Michelle Lee, Lynn Tai, Karin Tanaka, Carol Wolcott, and Cybel Wu from Western University of Health Sciences Physician Assistant Master’s Degree program.
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