Coma and white matter

at a glimpse


What is at stake?

Traumatic brain injury and cardiac arrest can lead to more or less prolonged coma. Depending on the extent of brain damage, the after-effects after waking up will have varying degrees of impact. 


Why does white matter matter?

White matter connects the different areas of the brain. When white matter is damaged, brain areas can no longer communicate with each other. This can lead to motor difficulties, such as coordinating movement, interacting with others or expressing oneself.


How can measuring the brain become a game changer for patients?

Measuring and monitoring the white matter of comatose patients enables to:

  • Provide a prognosis for comatose patient after cardiac arrest or traumatic brain injury
  • Support medical teams and relatives in their decision-making process




  • Velly et al., Use of brain diffusion tensor imaging for the prediction of long-term neurological outcomes in patients after cardiac arrest: a multicentre, international, prospective, observational, cohort study, The Lancet Neurology, 2018 Apr;17(4):317-32
  • Puybasset et al., Prognostic value of global deep white matter DTI metrics for 1-year outcome prediction in ICU traumatic brain injury patients: an MRI-COMA and CENTER-TBI combined study. Intensive Care Med, 2021 Dec; 48:p 201–212
  • Simeone et al., Long-term follow-up of neurodegenerative phenomenon in severe traumatic brain injury using MRI. Ann Phys Rehabil Med. 2022 Nov;65(6):101599.


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Last update : 09/07/2024