Have you ever wondered what other health problems veterans of Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom suffer as a result of traumatic brain injuries? A newly funded research program at Saint Louis University may provide some answers.
More than 2,000 veterans who have served in Iraq or Afghanistan since October 2001 have suffered from traumatic brain injuries caused by explosive devices, or IEDs. These devices are unexpended explosives of various origins detonated by a cellphone or another remote device. The high-pressure blast wave generated by IEDs can be as high as 1,600 feet per second and injure troops several hundred yards from the detonation. As a result, any survivors of these blasts are faced with new obstacles in life.
In order to develop a software system to document and track the health problems of veterans who sustained traumatic brain injuries, the Department of Defense awarded a $1.5 million grant to SLU’s Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders. SLU’s Dr. Travis Threats, professor and department chair, will serve as co-principal investigator for the study. The data from the study will help to determine what ways veterans with health problems can be assisted in adjusting to civilian life and achieve goals such as employment.
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