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Neurotrauma Reports


Pediatric traumatic brain injury (pTBI) is a major risk factor associated with adulthood incarceration. Most research into the link between pTBI and adulthood incarceration has focused on incarcerated males, who comprise the vast majority of incarcerated adults, particularly in industrialized nations. In this review, we sought to identify sex-related differences in the incidence and pathophysiology of pTBI and subsequent risk of adulthood incarceration. A scoping review was undertaken using PubMed, Scopus, Ovid, and the Cochrane Library. Articles analyzing sex-related differences in pTBI and adult incarceration rates, studies conducted on an incarcerated population, and cohort studies, cross-sectional studies, clinical trials, systematic reviews, or meta-analyses were included in this review. Of the 85 unique results, 25 articles met our inclusion criteria. Male children are 1.5 times more likely to suffer a TBI than females; however, the prevalence of incarcerated adults with a history of pTBI is ~35–45% for both sexes. Neurophysiologically, female sex hormones are implicated in neuroprotective roles, mitigating central nervous system (CNS) damage post-TBI, although this role may be more complex, given that injury severity and sequelae have been correlated with male sex whereas increased mortality has been correlated with female sex. Further investigation into the relationship between estrogen and subsequent clinical measurements of CNS function is needed to develop interventions that may alleviate the pathophysiological consequences of pTBI.



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brain injury, incarceration, pediatric traumatic brain injury, sex differences