Erythrocyte indicators of oxidative changes in patients with graded traumatic head injury

Chandrika Nayak, Dinesh Nayak, Annaswamy Raja, Anjali Rao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Citations (Scopus)


Context: Acute oxidative stress following a traumatic head injury (HI) has been implicated in inducing severe secondary brain damage and influencing the clinical outcome of HI patients. Aims: This study was performed to evaluate and compare the oxidative changes in patients with varying severity of HI in the early posttraumatic period using erythrocyte indicators. Settings and Design: Head injury patients were divided into two groups based on their Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) scores recorded at admission to the hospital on the day of trauma itself. Accordingly, the study included 30 severe HI (SHI, GCS scores 8 or less) and 25 Mild HI (MHI, GCS scores more than 8) patients. Thirty age and sex-matched healthy individuals were included in this comparative study as controls. Materials and Methods: Blood samples were obtained from controls and HI patients (within 24 h of trauma onset). Erythrocyte oxidative changes were studied by estimating thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS), glutathione (GSH), superoxide dismutase (SOD) and glutathione reductase (GR). Results: Erythrocyte TBARS levels were significantly higher and GSH levels were significantly lower in SHI and MHI patients as compared to controls. The SOD activity was significantly increased only in SHI patients and remained unchanged in MHI patients as compared to controls. As compared to MHI patients, erythrocyte TBARS levels were significantly higher, GSH levels were significantly lower and SOD activity was markedly elevated in SHI patients. Erythrocyte GR activity did not show significant changes in both groups of patients as compared to controls. Conclusion: Oxidative stress is evident in both SHI and MHI patients in the early posttraumatic period as reflected by their erythrocyte indicators, but the severity of oxidative stress has varied relatively with the severity of head injury. The present findings provide indications that early oxidative changes could influence the neurological recovery of HI patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)31-35
Number of pages5
JournalNeurology India
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 01-01-2008


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology

Cite this