Frontal Lobe Syndrome resulting from Traumatic Brain Injury
Trauma to the brain can result in frontal lobe damage and associated difficulties. These difficulties make up a Frontal Lobe Syndrome which includes problems with brain functions such as memory, attention and executive functioning (planning, decision-making, problem-solving, etc.). Individuals with Frontal Lobe Syndrome also experience difficulties with regulating their emotions which often results in tension in interpersonal relationships and problems with productivity at work. The individual may be easily irritated or become angry and have difficulty controlling their emotional responses. The individual may appear to be more indifferent about their lives (apathetic) and not take interest in previously enjoyed activities and hobbies. It is not uncommon for individuals with frontal lobe dysfunction to have little awareness of their difficulties and therefore not reach out for the support that they need. Personality changes may also result from Frontal Lobe Syndrome; family members may notice that the individual is more withdrawn and not as sociable as before the brain injury. Individuals may also display more impulsive and disinhibited behaviour that is uncharacteristic of their pre-accident personality. Damage to the frontal region of the brain may also result in disrupted sleeping patterns and daytime fatigue which can be a long-term difficulty. Speech problems such as difficulty retrieving words from memory are also common with Frontal Lobe Syndrome. All of these changes result in the brain-injured patient having difficulties functioning in their workplace and in relationships with others. Brain Injury also makes an individual more vulnerable to develop psychiatric illnesses such as Major Depressive Disorder.