5 June 2014 The military's approach to traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder
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Abstract
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) are common conditions. In Iraq and Afghanistan, explosive blast related TBI became prominent among US service members but the vast majority of TBI was still due to typical causes such as falls and sporting events. PTS has long been a focus of the US military mental health providers. Combat Stress Teams have been integral to forward deployed units since the beginning of the Global War on Terror. Military medical management of disease and injury follows standard of care clinical practice guidelines (CPG) established by civilian counterparts. However, when civilian CPGs do not exist or are not applicable to the military environment, new practice standards are created. Such is the case for mild TBI. In 2009, the VA-DoD CPG for management of mild TBI/concussion was published and a system-wide clinical care program for mild TBI/concussion was introduced. This was the first large scale effort on an entire medical care system to address all severities of TBI in a comprehensive organized way. In 2010, the VA-DoD CPG for management of PTSD was published. Nevertheless, both TBI and PTS are still incompletely understood. Investment in terms of money and effort has been committed by the DoD to their study. The Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center, National Intrepid Center of Excellence and the Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury are prominent examples of this effort. These are just beginnings, a work in progress ready to leverage advances made scientifically and always striving to provide the very best care to its military beneficiaries.
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Geoffrey S. F. Ling, Jamie Grimes, James M. Ecklund, "The military's approach to traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder", Proc. SPIE 9112, Sensing Technologies for Global Health, Military Medicine, and Environmental Monitoring IV, 91120J (5 June 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2058740; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2058740
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