Current Research Regarding Blast Injuries in Veterans

This current research from the New England Journal of Medicine¬† – Detection of Blast-Related Traumatic Brain Injury in U.S. Military Personnel –¬† shows that Blast Injury is not at all like mild traumatic brain injury, since the mTBI does not involve white matter injuries. The research does show white matter changes during the medical evacuation, done in Germany using Diffusion Tensor Imaging, and also that the white matter changes continue to evolve. They also show that not all symptomatic blast injuries are seen with this technique.

No traditional structural neuroimaging was able to see this damage (like CT or routine MRI). The NY Times recently reported on soldiers injuries evading the M.R.I and CT Scans

The brain areas involved included the orbital surfaces of the frontal lobe and the temporal areas.

These results point to the need for a clinical diagnosis, not a reliance on any given technology to answer the clinical question.

The endocrine changes from supposed pituitary injury, and the presence of micro-emboli due to pressure wave impact on the thorax that are reported in blast injury is not at all dismissible with these findings.

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