Glossary

brain plasticity The adaptive capacities of the brain; its ability to modify its own structure, e.g., organization and functioning.

nonsynaptic diffusion neurotransmission The diffusion through the extracellular fluid of neurotransmitters released at points that may be remote from the target cells, with the resulting activation of extrasynaptic receptors.

late brain reorganization Changes in sensory and motor representation, as well as other cerebral functions, that occur 2 or more years after damage to the brain.

functional rehabilitation Rehabilitation programs for persons with brain damage that are based on motivating activities relating to real-life activities.

receptor plasticity The up- and downregulation of synaptic and/ or nonsynaptic neurotransmitter receptors, such as those on the neuron or glia surface.

There is generally at least some recovery after the brain is damaged. Various mechanisms contribute to early and late reorganization of the brain. Much of the recovery, which is maximized by appropriate rehabilitation, occurs within months of the damage, but functional gains can be obtained even many years after the damage has occurred. The degree of recovery depends on many factors, including age, the brain area and amount of tissue damaged, the rapidity of the damage, the brain's mechanisms of functional reorganization,

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