This is very frustrating for me. Little is being studied (or has turned to molasses). Dead in the water! Please join me.
I have been diagnosed with PTSD, and I’ve never believed it. On the contrary, the more concussions I experienced, the more difficultly I had in dealing with (compartmentalizing) the same simple scenarios that previously hadn’t bothered me. I ask myself when the music skips, is it a scratched record, or a broken needle on the record player?
The movie “Concussion” with Will Smith should be enlightening for Combat Veterans who have experienced multiple blast related TBI’s. Sadly, the studies that identified CTE in Veterans exposed to blast STOPPED in 2012, though it was determined that more were required, and that these studies (conducted by the same Doctor(s)) were as conclusive as those that originally identified CTE in NFL football players.
According to the 2013 Report to Congress on Traumatic Brain Injury in the United States: Understanding the Public Health Problem among Current and Former Military Personnel – “CTE has been described in athletes who participated in contact sports and in 21 veterans (86% of whom were also athletes) (Goldstein et al.2012; McKee et al., 2009). Sharing symptoms with PTSD, patients who died with CTE have been described to present with poor concentration and memory, irritability, depression, and suicidality. The extent of the burden of CTE in service members exposed to TBI is unknown.”
JOIN ME in this fight! My vision is to reinvigorate the issue. My emails and letters to Congress who are on these subcommittees remain unanswered. I have asked them to meet me on June 25, 2016 when I paddle up the Potomac to the National Mall and Arlington. On that day we will paddle the final 10 miles together and deliver this message. More action must be taken – NOW! There are THOUSANDS of active cases with these type issues that need greater attention. The price of inaction is far too great. There are state of the art treatment modalities that work and that change lives!
Below is a 2011 Abstract from the same Dr Bennet Omalu who discovered CTE in deceased football players in 2002 –
2011 – Chronic traumatic encephalopathy in an Iraqi war veteran with posttraumatic stress disorder who committed suicide
Following his discovery of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) in football players in 2002, Dr. Bennet Omalu hypothesized that posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in military veterans may belong to the CTE spectrum of diseases. The CTE surveillance at the Brain Injury Research Institute was therefore expanded to include deceased military veterans diagnosed with PTSD. The authors report the case of a 27-year-old United States Marine Corps (USMC) Iraqi war veteran, an amphibious assault vehicle crewman, who committed suicide by hanging after two deployments to Fallujah and Ramadi. He experienced combat and was exposed to mortar blasts and improvised explosive device blasts less than 50 m away. Following his second deployment he developed a progressive history of cognitive impairment, impaired memory, behavioral and mood disorders, and alcohol abuse. Neuropsychiatric assessment revealed a diagnosis of PTSD with hyperarousal (irritability and insomnia) and numbing. He committed suicide approximately 8 months after his honorable discharge from the USMC. His brain at autopsy appeared grossly unremarkable except for congestive brain swelling. There was no atrophy or remote focal traumatic brain injury such as contusional necrosis or hemorrhage. Histochemical and immunohistochemical brain tissue analysis revealed CTE changes comprising multifocal, neocortical, and subcortical neurofibrillary tangles and neuritic threads (ranging from none, to sparse, to frequent) with the skip phenomenon, accentuated in the depths of sulci and in the frontal cortex. The subcortical white matter showed mild rarefaction, sparse perivascular and neuropil infiltration by histiocytes, and mild fibrillary astrogliosis. Apolipoprotein E genotype was 3/4. The authors report this case as a sentinel case of CTE in an Iraqi war veteran diagnosed with PTSD to possibly stimulate new lines of thought and research in the possible pathoetiology and pathogenesis of PTSD in military veterans as part of the CTE spectrum of diseases, and as chronic sequelae and outcomes of repetitive traumatic brain injuries.
2012 – Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy in Blast-Exposed Military Veterans and a Blast Neurotrauma Mouse Model
Blast exposure is associated with traumatic brain injury (TBI), neuropsychiatric symptoms, and long-term cognitive disability. We examined a case series of postmortem brains from U.S. military veterans exposed to blast and/or concussive injury. We found evidence of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a tau protein–linked neurodegenerative disease, that was similar to the CTE neuropathology observed in young amateur American football players and a professional wrestler with histories of concussive injuries.