Help with the Mild Brain Injury Puzzle
Mild Traumatic Brain Injury (mTBI) has become a more familiar term as we hear about returning soldiers with mTBI sustained in IED attacks, a growing concern about concussive injuries among athletes at all levels and an increased understanding of the long-term pervasive features of Mild Traumatic Brain Injury. It is important to remember that approximately 80% of all brain injuries fall into the “mild” category. In many cases the symptoms are not detected until months or years past the injury and often the symptoms are thought to be a manifestation of a psychiatric or substance problem.
The Ontario NeuroTrauma Foundation (ONF.org) has developed an evidence-based guide for the identification and management of Mild Traumatic Brain Injury. We posted the ONF mTBI on this website, traumaticbraininjury.net in the Resources category. The Guide is a comprehensive manual which covers many aspects related to occurrence, identification and diagnosis and the systemic effects of mTBI and prevention strategies for athletes.
In November and December of 2010 we devoted our Professional Seminar events to the viewing of an excellent video training program: The Silent Epidemic, Mild Traumatic Brain Injury, Identification and Diagnosis and Management of mTBI. The videos featured the leading experts and offered sound information for clinicians to learn how to identify suspected mTBI in their patients. The production was created by Linda Gillett, PhD of the New Mexico Aging and Long Term Services Department. Funding was made available for this video through a HRSA grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
I am pleased to see the development of resources and tools to assist in the identification of mTBI. We have come a long way in our understanding of the effects and needed treatment for mTBI, but we also have a long way to go to create the needed resources.