Head Injuries Linked to Soldiers with PTSD

Findings of a study carried out on war veterans suggest minor brain injuries suffered by army personnel whilst on a tour of duty may contribute to them developing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or other psychological conditions.

Minor brain injuries suffered by military personnel whilst serving in active war zones will often go undetected. However, the results of a study carried out earlier this year suggest there is a correlation between soldiers suffering a minor head injury and them displaying symptoms of PTSD. The study by Jeffrey Bazarian, Professor of Emergency Medicine at the University of Rochester in the US, assessed war veteran’s experiences of combat including accidents, explosions and injuries that may have led to a minor, undiagnosed brain injury. Researchers also assessed whether the veterans had been diagnosed with PTSD or displayed any symptoms of the condition. It was found there was a positive correlation between the two factors with a higher incidence of PTSD symptoms being reported for those that had experienced a minor brain injury.

Prior to the research it had been the belief that PTSD stemmed solely from the fact an individual had experienced a traumatic and stressful event or series of events which lead to them suffering chronic stress. However, Jeffrey Bazarian, lead author of the study, argues these results add further clarity to the picture by identifying that as well as severe and chronic stress, the physical impact of a bomb blast or accident can contribute to the development of the condition as well.

Of further interest was the finding that a minor brain injury can be sustained without the individual suffering amnesia or loss of consciousness, two conditions commonly associated with and used to diagnose the injury. It is therefore possible that some veterans may be unaware they have sustained such an injury and are potentially at greater risk of developing post-traumatic stress disorder.

For free advice on making a claim for military injury compensation, call us on 0800 083 5500 and speak to one of our specialist PTSD solicitors.