Shock wave blasts from improvised explosive devices, rocket propelled grenades and land mines are the leading cause of TBI for active duty military personnel in combat zones. Reports indicate that up to 20 percent of returning veterans exhibit symptoms of having sustained traumatic brain injury.
More than 450,000 U.S. service members were diagnosed with a TBI from 2000 to 2021.
Studies suggest that service members and Veterans who have sustained a TBI may:
- Have ongoing symptoms.
- Experience co-occurring health conditions, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression.
It is currently unclear if poorer physical and mental health outcomes following a TBI (such as depression) among Veterans are specific to the injury or if other factors, such as deployment and exposure to combat, play a stronger role.
The results suggested that military and civilian cases differ in most characteristics and outcomes. The data showed that violent causes of TBI were more common in the VA group, while falls were more common iln civilian cases. Most violent causes of TBI in Veterans were related to deployment.
Here are some resources and agencies that may be able to assist veterans and caregivers who are seeking assistance in living with and treating Traumatic Brain Injurty (TBI).
- Brain Injury Association of America is a nonprofit organization that aims to improve the lives of individuals with brain injury and their circles of support by focusing on prevention, research, education, and advocacy. BIAA encompasses a national network of more than 40 chartered state affiliates across the country and hundreds of local chapters and support groups.
- Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence promotes state-of-the-science care from point-of-injury to reintegration for service members, veterans, and their families to prevent and mitigate consequences of mild to severe TBI.
- National Institutes of Health The National Center for Medical and Rehabilitation Research (NCMRR) was established within the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in 1990. The Center is a component of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD). The Center's mission is to support research, fostering the scientific knowledge needed to enhance health, productivity, independence, and quality of life for persons with TBI.
- National Institute of Neurological Disorders supports and conducts research, both basic and clinical, on Traumatic Brain Injury, and seeks better understanding, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention.
- International Brain Injury Association is dedicated to the development and support of multidisciplinary medical and clinical professionals, advocates, policy makers, consumers and others who work to improve outcomes and opportunities for persons with brain injury.
Brain Injury Rehabilitation Program The Brain Injury Recovery Center at Penn Medicine Rehabilitation offers a group of services designed to help restore the highest possible mental and pysical function after a brain injury. They work to restore cognitive function and reduce or eliminate disabilities using a multidisciplinary approach to care.
MSKTC - Living With TBI MSKTC works closely with researchers to develop resources for people living with traumatic brain injuris and their supporters. These evidence-based materials are available in a variety of formats such as printable PDF documents, videos, and slideshows.
VA TBI Research The Veterans Affairs (VA) Research and Development program has been improving the lives of Veterans through health care discovery and innovation. VA Research is unique because of its focus on health issuss that affect Veterans.
Military Health Systems Patient and Family Resoures offers a variety of educational information and resources to help patients and their families learn about mild, moderate, severe or penetrating TBI. The topics covered include signs and symptoms, coping and recovery, and prevention. Through fact sheets, booklets and guides—service members, veterans, their families and caregivers—can learn more about the common challenges experienced after sustaining a traumatic brain injury.
United States Brain Injury Allliance Building state and national capacity to crreate a better future alongside individuals affected by brain injury.
VA Caregivers Support Program Family Caregivers paly an important role in recovery. You can offer support, encourgement, and guidance to your injured family member, and help ensure the treatment plan established by the medical professionals caring for the Veteran is followed.
Centers For Disease Control TBI is a major cause of death and disability in the United States. Anyone can experience a TBI, but data suggest that some groups are at greater risk for getting a TBI or having worse health outcomes after the injury.