A Holistic Approach to Understanding Military TBIs: A Multidisciplinary Perspective

Stephanie L. Summers, Christie Chung*, Mills College

Full manuscript: www.kon.org/urc/v10/summers.html

Abstract This paper reviews the major findings and controversies relevant to military-related TraumaticĀ Brain Injury (TBI) from various disciplines (mainly psychology, medicine, and neuroscience). The aim is to aid readers in examining the topic from a multidisciplinary perspective that takes into consideration the interconnection of the various domains of functioning affected by a military TBI in order to better understand the complicated challenges faced by military personnel who are returning to our communities with such injuries. I will begin by briefly defining TBI and explaining how a TBI may occur, followed by a review of studies regarding biopsychosocial outcomes that represent the most commonly noted changes, complications, and challenges an individual with a military TBI may face. Then, the implications of the research are presented, the connections that can be made between them, and the new directions the research community should pursue in order to further our understanding of the military TBIs on all levels of functioning and from injury to outcome.

Introduction The impact of military traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) has grown to become so great that it is now considered one of the prominent signature war wounds of the Global War on Terror and Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) and Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) (Moore & Jaffee, 2010). Thus, it is important for the public, families of service members, and the clinicians and health professionals who will be working closely with soldiers and veterans who return to their communities with a TBI, to understand just what a TBI is, how it will impact the individual in various domains of their life, and what factors influence the progress of TBI from injury to long-term outcomes.

Read the full manuscript: www.kon.org/urc/v10/summers.html