Predictors of elevated intracranial hypertension in spontaneous supratentorial intracranial hemorrhage


Dr. Gabriela Trifan

Dr. Gabriela Trifan, PGY3 Resident

I started my research career early after finishing medical school. At that time, I was fortunate enough to meet and work closely with a renowned physicist – Dr. Mark Haacke the creator of SWI (susceptibility weighted imaging) MRI sequence from whom I learned basic MRI acquisition techniques and applied MRI. My early research was under Dr. Haacke’s guidance and focused on utilizing MRI sequences (especially SWI) for identifying and quantifying brain calcium and iron depositions, utilizing 3D methods for identifying anatomical variations of the head and neck vasculature as well as using high pass filtered SWI phase for flow analysis for different neurodegenerative disorders. Through the years, results from these projects have been presented at multiple national and international conferences and published in different peer reviewed articles. Later, while working together with Dr. Benson, a Wayne State University neurologist, I shifted my focus on the neuroimaging findings to patients with mild traumatic brain injury (TBI) who exhibited ongoing neurocognitive symptoms. The result of this project identified a specific pattern of neuroimaging injury in TBI patients versus controls. Part of this project was done on former NFL players with history of multiple concussions, at the time when Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE), was starting to be more talked about. Results of this research was also presented at symposiums and published in peer reviewed articles.
During my ongoing neurology residency training, clinical stroke peaked my interest and I shifted my researched focus on this topic. I was again fortunate enough to be able to work with Dr. Fernando Testai, the UIC vascular neurology section head, on the current research project, which focuses on identifying predictors of outcome after intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) as well as identifying early predictors of intracerebral pressure (ICP) elevation after spontaneous ICH and their relationship to outcome. This subject interested me as there is still a need for a more comprehensive understanding and analysis of ICH and the various predictors on outcome. This project also focuses on the ICH effects on cardiac function and seizure frequency as well as addresses the need for a new IVH system grading in ICH. Partial results were presented at the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) conference in Boston in 2017. This is an ongoing exciting project that will bring a better understanding of how ICH as an entity affects not only the brain but the cardiac function as well, and how various factors influence outcome, as the goal is to ultimately apply these results into improving patient’s outcome. My future research goal will also be to integrating SWI and its imaging derivatives (SWAN, STAGE) into stroke imaging. I am thrilled with my time and the outstanding training I am receiving here at UIC!