Neurovascular Coupling: A Unifying Theory for Post-Concussion Syndrome Treatment and Functional Neuroimaging

Post-concussion syndrome (PCS) occurs in a significant percentage of concussion patients and is defined as having a history of traumatic brain injury with persistence of three or more symptoms. Standard structural clinical neuroimaging studies show no abnormal findings for the majority of PCS patients as opposed to functional MRI, which often reveals irregularities in the blood-oxygen level dependent (BOLD) signal. This suggests that dysregulation of neurovascular coupling (NVC), which causes abnormal BOLD signals, plays a significant role in PCS pathology. Compared to the pathophysiologic mechanisms occurring in acute concussion, the underlying neuropathophysiology of chronic concussive sequelaeor PCS is less understood, though becoming clearer with emerging research. We present a treatment approach grounded in the physiological theory presented here called Enhanced Performance in Cognition (EPIC), which has shown strong clinical success.


Mark Allen and Alina Fong

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