Traumatic Brain Injury -- A Legacy of War

Voice of America

The U.S. ended its conflict in Afghanistan, but the Veterans Health Administration continues researching ways to reduce the impact of the most serious injuries U.S. troops suffered in conflicts in both Afghanistan and Iraq. VOA's Carol Pearson reports on one area of research, traumatic brain injury.

traumatic brain injury or tbi is a
legacy of war
an accident or sport
the definition of a traumatic brain
injury is a blow or a jolt to the head
that is significant enough to cause a
disruption in functioning of your
nervous system central nervous system
tbis can be caused by mild concussions
or severe injuries
former representative gabby giffords
suffered a tbi when she was shot in the
head at point-blank range 10 years ago
she has spent years recovering we've
seen individuals with more mild injuries
that have
very significant symptom burden over
and on the contrary we've seen
individuals who have had very severe
uh brain injury that have been you know
in coma for a month or two
and have had a full recovery return to
work and have
just remarkable reentry into the
skelton says imaging studies and labs
are getting better but in many ways
brain function is a mystery there is
obviously still a long ways to go
there's a lot more we need to learn
how to better diagnose
even those small concussive events
closer to the time of injury
and also to develop what we call
biomarkers or something something that
you can objectively test or measure to
show that someone has had a concussion
traumatic brain injuries can have mental
and emotional consequences as well
scolton says veterans are screened for
mental health issues including
post-traumatic stress disorder
many are followed for years to ensure
their well-being
scientists are also learning about
how the brain cells repair or regenerate
and there are things people can do to
help recover from tbi that don't rely on
medicine exercise promotes
neuroplasticity good sleep
helps to helps your brain to heal and
good nutrition
and then minimizing symptom burden from
mental health conditions as well
good nutrition and exercise are the
basics of overall good health care the
brain in many ways is still a mystery
that scientists are just beginning to
carol pearson
voa news


Posted on BrainLine September 10, 2021. Reviewed September 10, 2021.

Source: Voice of America