Risk Factors for Later-in-life Dementia: The Science and Challenges Behind Traumatic Brain Injury

July 22, 2021

12:00 PM – 1:30 PM ET
1.5 CE Credits

The later-in-life effects of traumatic brain injury have been controversial and debated. Some research points to a higher risk of developing dementia years after a traumatic brain injury, though some studies report no such association. The complexities and limitations of this area of research are numerous, and the media attention to some high-profile cases in the news have contributed to potentially premature conclusions about long-term consequences of mild brain injury. The purpose of this seminar is to review and integrate the scientific research suggesting traumatic brain injury can serve as a risk factor for developing dementia, and present some of the methodological limitations inherent in those studies with an in-depth discussion of the important gaps and limitations in understanding the later-in-life effects of traumatic brain injury.

After the webinar, participants will be able to:

1. Describe the science identifying traumatic brain injury as a risk factor for developing dementia later in life.
2. Discuss the critical gaps in understanding how traumatic brain injury may relate to developing dementia.
3. Explain popular theoretical mechanisms linking traumatic brain injury to later-in-life dementia.

Target Audience: 
Neuropsychologists and clinicians/scientists in other fields

Instructional Level: 

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C. Munro Cullum, PhD, ABPP/Cn
Professor of Psychiatry, Neurology & Neurotherapeutics, and
Neurological Surgery
Pamela Blumenthal Distinguished Professor of Clinical Psychology
Vice Chair and Chief, Psychology Division, Dept. of Psychiatry
Senior Neuropsychologist, O’Donnell Brain Institute
University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center

William B. Barr, PhD, ABPP

Associate Professor
Director, Neuropsychology Division
Department of Neurology
NYU Grossman School of Medicine

Christian LoBue, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor in Psychiatry and Neurological Surgery
The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center

Dr. Barr is the Director of the Neuropsychology Division in the Department of Neurology at NYU-Langone Health. He is an Associate Professor of Neurology at the NYU Grossman School of Medicine. He is board-certified in Clinical Neuropsychology through the American Board of Professional Psychology and has over 30 years of experience in clinical practice, training, and research in that field. Dr. Barr has been on the editorial boards of multiple professional journals and has served as an officer and board member of a number of professional societies, including a term as President of the Society for Clinical Neuropsychology (Division 40) of the American Psychological Association (APA).  He has an active clinical practice in neuropsychological assessment, involving both clinical and forensic cases, with ongoing research programs on cognitive and behavioral aspects of epilepsy in addition to other programs in mild traumatic brain injury and forensic neuropsychology. He has served as a professional consultant to professional sports leagues, including the NFL and NHL. He has a long history of research studies on concussion in athletes and is an active participant in current studies on chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE).   

Christian LoBue, Ph.D.,
is a Licensed Psychologist with the Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists. Dr. LoBue is an Assistant Professor in the Departments of Psychiatry and Neurological Surgery at UT Southwestern Medical Center. He specializes in neuropsychological assessment and management of behaviors related to concussion, severe traumatic brain injury, Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias, cerebrovascular disorders, and brain tumors, performing evaluations to characterize thinking skills such as memory, attention, and language in people with suspected or diagnosed brain conditions and collaborating closely with neurologists, neurosurgeons, and psychiatrists to identify and treat patients in both ambulatory and inpatient settings. Dr. LoBue completed both his doctorate in clinical psychology and postdoctoral fellowship in neuropsychology at UT Southwestern before joining the faculty in 2018. His research interests include exploring factors related to concussion recovery, the long-term effects of head trauma during aging, and neurostimulation interventions after brain injury. He has received research funding from the Alzheimer’s Association and the Department of Defense. His lab is also involved in the development of new tests for assessing symptoms and thinking skills in those with brain conditions. Dr. LoBue is a member of the American Psychological Association, the International Neuropsychological Society, the National Academy of Neuropsychology, and the Society for Clinical Neuropsychology.

Dr. Cullum
is a Clinical Neuropsychologist who specializes in the assessment of cognitive disorders. He is board certified in Clinical Neuropsychology (ABPP/ABCN) and serves as the Vice Chair and Chief of the Division of Psychology in the Department of Psychiatry, where he holds the Pamela Blumenthal Distinguished Professorship in Clinical Psychology. He is the PI of the Concussion-Texas (ConTex) studies, serves as the Scientific Director of the Texas Alzheimer's Research and Care Consortium (TARCC), and is the Clinical Core leader in the UTSW Alzheimer's Disease Center. He is a past president of the Society for Clinical Neuropsychology and the National Academy of Neuropsychology and the incoming President of the Sports Neuropsychology Society. He is actively involved in research, teaching, and clinical practice in neuropsychology. His research includes investigations into short- and long-term effects of concussion and early detection and differential diagnosis of neurodegenerative conditions of aging. His clinical research lab is also involved in cognitive test development and in telemedicine applications of neuropsychology.

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