A Surprising Survey of High School Football Players and Neurocognitive Function

The survey was presented in the 2014 annual meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons based on studying over 1200 high school football players, utilizing neuropsychological tests to look for an association with years of participation in football, age, concussion history. Mean age was 16, mean time of playing football was 4-1/2 years, and 4% had a concussion. Surprisingly, there was no significant association between years of football participation and neurocognitive function. The implication is that the playing of football is not in and of itself detrimental. Nevertheless, several recent research studies have found a link between subconcussive head blows in football and neurocognitive decline in adolescents.

Fullerton Neurology And Headache Center

New Migraine Drugs Target CGRP

There are currently 3 drugs being studied that target CGRP. One drug showed a reduction of 66% compared to a 52% placebo group reduction in migraine days. Sixteen percent were headache-free while none of the placebo patients were. The second drug had a 63% reduction compared to 42% in placebo group. No safety issues were noted.

Our center is a site in a research study with a third drug, which is a monoclonal antibody directed against CGRP, a pain transmitter critical in the migraine process.

For more information about CGRP or to schedule an appointment, call us at (714) 738-0800 or visit our website.

A Cautionary Tale about Cannabis Effects in Patients with MS

Cognitive dysfunction affects 50% of patients with MS and affects daily activities in 5% to 10%. Several studies have shown that patients with MS who smoke cannabis have more severe cognitive difficulties than those who do not, in particular affecting working memory, information processing speed, and executive dysfunction. A new study published in Neurology May 27, 2014, consisted of 20 subjects, smoking cannabis daily or 4 to 5 times. They were trying to treat pain, spasticity, insomnia, anxiety. Several smoked for recreation. There were no structural differences on MRI from a matched group who did not smoke. There were, however, significant differences in cerebral activation in the smokers on functional MRI. No subject was intoxicated at the time of the evaluations. Patients with MS show increased activity on functional MRI as cognitive tasks become more complex. These compensatory efforts can fail. This seems to be the reason that smoking cannabis affects cognitive function. It is not known if this activation pattern would improve or how long it would take if patients stopped smoking.

For more information contact us

Or call our Center at (714) 738-0800

Dr. Jack Florin

If It’s Not Too Late, Get A Great Education

According to a study published in Neurology, researchers found that patients with a higher educational level recovered better from a moderate to severe traumatic brain injury. College graduates were 7 times more likely to be free of disability 1 year after a traumatic brain injury than those who did not finish high school. These findings, and other studies, also hold for Alzheimer’s and multiple sclerosis.

How Common Is Autism?

A report by the Communicable Disease Center (CDC), a government agency, published March 28, 2014, estimates that 1 in 68 US children has autism spectrum disorder, a 30% increase from the CDC’s estimate of 1 in 88 in 2008. The disorder is more prevalent in boys than girls. The increased prevalence may be secondary to improved clinician identification and a growing number of autistic children with average to above average intellectual ability or a combination of both factors. Autism is recognized as a spectrum, no longer limited to the severely affected. It can be diagnosed by the time a child reaches 2, and parents are urged to take action if their child shows any developmental delay. The CDC will launch an awareness initiative called “Birth to Five: Watch Me Thrive.” Most children with autism are not diagnosed until after age 4.

The CDC cited several limitations to the report, and these new numbers need to be confirmed.

Please call us at 714-738-0800 to schedule an appointment. We answer our phones Monday-Friday, 7:30am-12 noon/1:00pm -4:30pm.

Or visit our website

Orange County Neurologist Dr. Jack Florin Announces New Website for Fullerton Neurology and Headache Center

FullertonNeuro-Logo

FULLERTON, Calif.–(Business Wire)–Dr. Jack Florin, one of Southern California’s preeminent Neurologists, announced today that Fullerton Neurology and Headache Center has introduced a new website to better showcase its full suite of services.

“We wanted to launch a digital platform that more accurately communicated our complete range of services and core competencies,” said Florin. “Our core competencies cover a broad range of services including Neurological Care, Multiple Sclerosis, Headaches, and Children’s Headache treatments, Neuromuscular Disorders and our Electrodiagnostic Laboratory as well as Clinical Trials.”

In addition Fullerton Neurology and Headache Center launched a new Facebook presence as well as a Twitter site to build the Center’s community outreach.

Read more about this article here.

Fullerton Neurology and Headache Center
Dr. Jack Florin, MD
Medical Director
714-738-0800

What Factors Influence Outcome for Epilepsy Patients?

Overall, about 60% of patients with epilepsy have a permanent remission, meaning no seizures on medication. About 25% are treatment-resistant. The remainder are not seizure-free but have good quality of life.

Childhood absence epilepsy (petit mal) can be controlled about 80% of the time.

About 70% of patients with juvenile myoclonic epilepsy are seizure-free. Most need lifelong treatment, but recent studies show that about 10% to 20% could stop medications after many years.

Poor prognostic factors are a young age at onset of seizures, more seizures at the start of treatment, and a higher number of drugs that a patient has failed.

A new and exciting development is the recognition of “autoimmune epilepsy,” which may be common in patients with treatment-resistant seizures and may respond to treatment other than antiepileptic drugs.

For more information visit our website http://www.fullertonneurocenter.com
Or give us a call at (714) 738-0800

Why Do Some People Have A Higher Tolerance For Pain Than Others?

Research presented in April 2014 at the American Academy of Neurology annual meeting identified 4 key genes that explain why some people have a higher and others a lower pain tolerance. Over 2700 people diagnosed with chronic pain were tested for certain genes. Nine percent had high pain tolerance, 46% moderate, and 45% low pain tolerance. The DRD1 gene variant was 33% more prevalent in the high pain tolerance group. The DR2 gene was 25% more common in patients with low pain tolerance. Two other genes also correlated. All participants were taking opioid pain medications. More studies are planned.

For more information, please contact us at

Phone (714) 738-0800
or via email
fullertonneuro@fullertonneuro.net

Visit our website

Targeting B-cells Treats MS

The results of a study in which we were a site of a drug, ofatumumab, an anti-B-cell antibody, were reported at the AAN meeting. The drug showed marked reduction in MRI lesions. Patients receiving the drug had less than 1 new brain lesion per year, whereas placebo group had 16 lesions. The drug is now entering phase III trials, the last step before applying for FDA approval to market it in the United States.

For more information visit our website at www.fullertonneurocenter.com

Carotid Artery Stenosis May Be Linked To Memory Problems

Also presented at the AAN annual meeting, a study of 67 people with asymptomatic 50% carotid artery stenosis and 60 people with vascular risk factors but without stenosis. Risk factors included diabetes, hypertension, high blood cholesterol, and coronary artery disease. The carotid stenosis group performed significantly worse on tests for motor and processing speed, learning, and memory. Language scores did not differ. Patients with 50% asymptomatic carotid artery stenosis generally are not advised to have surgery. This strategy may change.

For more information please contact  us at
Phone (714) 738-0800
fullertonneuro@fullertonneuro.net

Or visit our website http://www.fullertonneurocenter.com