Veteran Morgan Luttrell: Where I Went for TBI Help

The brain and the body are connected. You need both to be healthy in order to be your whole self. Veteran Morgan Luttrell traveled the country looking for help after the injuries to his brain and body. He found the most with Dr. James Kelly at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE). They provided him with a whole picture and a plan.

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I went to California, I went to Texas, I went to Florida, I went to Minnesota, I went to Boston and visited these premier facilities. And they’re common knowledge - everybody knows them. And my biggest stepping off point was the National Intrepid Center of Excellence. Dr. Kelly - saved my life. The place is arguably the premier diagnostic facility in the world and I’ll argue that any day of the week. They gave me - they absolutely said hey look, this is what we’re seeing, this is what was going on. The problem was, it was a neck-up thing, again. And it was like, we don’t have anything for this. Well, that was the problem. I mean, the physical part, I came out of that cast and went down to Athletes Performance which is now Exo, it’s down in Florida. And I spent six weeks there. And I was back on deployment shortly thereafter. I mean, Virginia High Performance - those guys put you together. I mean, it’s - you can’t fix the brain and not the body. You can’t fix the body and not the brain. It’s connected. It’s one big fluid machine. Now, I can’t take my head off at night and put it on the bedside table and call it good. If this is bad, it’s going to drag this down. If this is bad, it’s going to drag this down. I figured that out before I was in the fields that I am today because there was something wrong with both. A lot of times, this guy’s like, hey, just get my body right; somebody else can answer the questions. Again, that goes back to me being leader - I had to answer the questions. I had to stand up in front of the leadership and say, this is what we’re doing. If I didn’t have the ability to do that, I couldn’t employ my men. So, hey, sir, I’m going home for a couple of weeks on vacation to see the family. And then I’d travel around, and spend a couple of weeks at the Center for Brain Health, VT Southwestern, and Mayo Clinic, things of that nature. NICoE told me what was going on. They gave me a diagnostic package that showed me, this is why you’re having these problems. And I’m going to tell you something, just knowing that - made me feel a hundred percent better, period. And that is what’s lacking out there with the men, my brothers and sisters, that don’t have the opportunity to go to a facility like I did. And that’s what we have to course correct. This video was produced by BrainLine thanks to generous support from the Infinite Hero Foundation.

Posted on BrainLine June 11, 2021.

About the author: Morgan Luttrell

Morgan Luttrell is a Navy SEAL veteran. He sustained back injures including major damage to his spinal cord and suffered a traumatic brain injury in a helicopter crash during training. When he got out, he said he traveled the country trying to figure out how to “fix” his brain. He earned a master’s degree in applied cognition and neuroscience and a Ph.D. focusing his studies on helping veterans with PTSD and other traumatic brain injuries.

Morgan Luttrell

This video was produced by BrainLine thanks to generous support from the Infinite Hero Foundation.