consultants are sandburs

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Veterans and traumatic brain injury.

The current KARE 11 story triggered this post.

It speaks for itself, but it was encouraging to see Walz and Hegseth both mentioned, the hope being they could work together, but aside from that showing the worry is a bipartisan concern.

National Geographic has published a lengthy item on explosion related TBI, including a graphic of brain movement from nearby explosions and noting how explosion related TBI differs from sports or accident concussion truma. See also, same online source, an interview of the report author, and a parallel story on concussion injury. [UPDATE: At the end of the first linked item, there is a link over to here. The images are compelling.]

CDC on traumatic brain injury, here.

While unaware of any conclusive medical literature about differences, it appears that differences are recognized within the applicable medical specialties, and that emphasizes the need in the VA to assure that the proper specialists do TBI examinations.

Another uncertainty for general readers, who may need to do extended web search, is the distance/severity effect, and the trauma repetition worry, given repeated deployments in areas where improvised explosive devices are used against US troops.

Does sitting at a desk in a noncombat task with outside incoming mortar rounds nearby, not a direct hit but nearby, require worry to a veteran family, and should everyone experiencing such a situation, even once, be evaluated? Caution seems to dictate that conservative approach, but how does that square with the demand on VA resources, and triage that way?

Ditto, for convoy vehicle occupants at differing distances from a triggered IED.

Many questions.

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