By OTSG for STAND-TO!February 25, 2010
Traumatic Brain Injury
What it is'
Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs) are treatable and some can be prevented by following safety guidelines of wearing helmets, seatbelts and obeying speed limits when operating a motor vehicle. The Army will raise awareness and educate leaders, Soldiers and family members and civilians on the signs, symptoms, prevention and resources available to diagnose and treat TBI.
TBI is a disruption of function in the brain that results from either a blow or jolt to the head or a penetrating head injury. The severity of TBI can range from "mild" commonly know as a concussion, to severe and an extended period of unconsciousness or amnesia after the injury. The majority of personnel who sustain a concussion can expect a full recovery with no lasting mental or physical effects.
What the Army has done'
The Army has increased TBI training for combat medics in theater and for all physicians, nurse case managers and specialist in the neurosciences. The Military Acute Concussion Evaluation (MACE) is a screening tool available in theater to assist in diagnosing mild TBI. The Army also in coordination with the Defense Center of Excellence (DCoE) for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury and the Department of Veterans Affairs continues to expand resources dedicated to TBI research and treatment. The DCoE Outreach Center serves as the open door for Soldiers, veterans and family members needing support or assistance with TBI and is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 1(866) 966-1020, or by e-mail to DCoE Outreach Center.
What does the Army have planned for the future'
The Army recognizes that TBI is a serious concern and will continue to dedicate resources to research, diagnose, treat and prevent mild, moderate and severe TBI.
Why is TBI education and prevention important to the Army'
The prevention and mitigation of potential mild TBI is a command and leadership issue. Commanders and leaders are responsible for the health and welfare of Soldiers, family members and their civilian staffs. The Army wants everyone-leaders, Soldiers, family members and civilians to know that there is no stigma associated for persons who seek a diagnosis or treatment for TBI. Whether in a combat or non-combat environment-reporting a TBI and getting prompt medical care is an act of strength and courage and the key to recovery.
U.S. Army Medical Department Web site
Army Behavioral Health Web site
Defense Centers of Excellence Web site
Brain Injury Association of America
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Web site
For support or assistance, 24 hours a day, seven days a week : Call 1(866) 966-1020 or e-mail DCoE Outreach Center