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Traumatic Brain Injury

According to the Centers for Disease and Prevention (CDC), 1.7 million people are diagnosed with a brain injury each year.

What is Traumatic Brain Injury—or TBI?

TBI occurs as the result from a blow or jolt to the head that disrupts the normal function of the brain. Categories for TBI are:

  • Mild
  • Moderate
  • Severe
  • Penetrating

The most common form of TBI in the military is mild, and is also known as a concussion.

According to the Defense Health Agency Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence (TBICoE), 434,618 service members have been diagnosed with a first-time TBI since 2000. The most common form of TBI in the military is mild, and is also known as a concussion. To learn more about TBI numbers, visit the DoD TBI Worldwide Numbers page.

Traumatic Brain Injury Awareness

TBI Topic Page Review Form

The Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence (TBICoE) manages the content on the Health.mil Traumatic Brain Injury Topic Page for the Defense Health Agency (DHA). To submit content for review and approval to this page, Military Health System agencies and other government partners can download and email this form, along with attached content in a Word document, to the TBICoE website manager at dha.TBICoEinfo@mail.mil.

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Caregiver Guide supports service members and veterans with TBI

Article
7/22/2021
Military family posing for a picture

Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence’s 2021 Caregiver Guide provides specific tools to help caregivers manage TBI patient recovery.

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Centers of Excellence | Traumatic Brain Injury | TBI Education and Training Events

PRA Training Video 1: PRA Overview

Video
7/22/2021
Thumbnail image of PRA training video 1, PRA overview.

In the first of TBICoE's Progressive Return to Activity (PRA) video training series, you will learn about the reasons for using a progressive return to activity process and receive an overview of the 2021 PRA algorithm and its associated tools. By the end of lesson one, providers will better understand the PRA process, and explain that process to service members diagnosed with concussion. Each video in the PRA training series is designed to support primary care providers' ability to manage concussion/traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Recommended Content:

Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence | Provider Resources | Provider Education | Traumatic Brain Injury

PRA Training Video 2: Six Major Changes

Video
7/22/2021
Thumbnail image of PRA Training Video 2, Six Major Changes

In this lesson we review the six major changes in the TBICoE's revised 2021 Progressive Return to Activity (PRA) Clinical Recommendation that differ from the original recommendation. The changes reflect the latest TBI research, and will make it easier for providers to manage the recovery process and return service members with concussion to full duty as quickly and safely as possible. Each video in the PRA training series is designed to support primary care providers' ability to manage concussion/traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Recommended Content:

Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence | Provider Resources | Provider Education | Traumatic Brain Injury

PRA Training Video 3: Understanding Relative Rest

Video
7/22/2021
Thumbnail image for PRA Training video 3, understanding relative rest

In this lesson we explain the differences between complete rest and relative rest in a staged concussion recovery process, and provide examples of activities that promote relative rest. The revised Progressive Return to Activity (PRA) Clinical Recommendation uses the term 'relative rest' to emphasize the importance of early introduction of physical and cognitive activities that do not provoke symptoms following TBI. Each video in the PRA training series is designed to support primary care providers' ability to manage concussion/traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Recommended Content:

Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence | Provider Resources | Provider Education | Traumatic Brain Injury

PRA Training Video 4: PRA Progression Criteria

Video
7/22/2021
Thumbnail image for PRA Training video 4, PRA progression criteria

In this lesson, we review the criteria for advancing through the stages of the Progressive Return to Activity (PRA) Clinical Recommendation. Each video in the PRA training series is designed to support primary care providers' ability to manage concussion/traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Recommended Content:

Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence | Provider Resources | Provider Education | Traumatic Brain Injury

PRA Training Video 5: The Six Stages of the PRA

Video
7/22/2021
Thumbnail image for PRA training video 5, the six stages of the PRA

In this lesson, we cover the key activity objectives for each of the six stages of the Progressive Return to Activity (PRA) Clinical Recommendation and provide activity examples for each stage. Each stage is designed to gradually increase the intensity and duration of a service member's physical and cognitive activity as they advance in the PRA process. Each video in the PRA training series is designed to support primary care providers' ability to manage concussion/traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Recommended Content:

Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence | Provider Resources | Provider Education | Traumatic Brain Injury

PRA Training Video 6: The Return to Duty Screening

Video
7/22/2021
Thumbnail image of PRA training video 6, the return to duty screening

In this lesson, we cover how to perform the Return to Duty, or RTD screening, which now includes both vestibular/physical and neurocognitive examinations. The purpose of the RTD screening is to objectively measure whether a service member is ready for return to full duty. Each video in the Progressive Return to Activity training series is designed to support primary care providers' ability to manage concussion/traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Recommended Content:

Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence | Provider Resources | Provider Education | Traumatic Brain Injury

PRA Training Video 7: Symptom-Guided Management and Specialty Referral Guidance Tables

Video
7/22/2021
Thumbnail image of PRA training video 7, the symptom-guided management and specialty referral guidance tables.

This lesson covers how to use the Progressive Return to Activity, or PRA's Symptom-Guided Management and Specialty Referral Guidance tables. This lesson also details primary care management strategies for service members who are not progressing as expected in the PRA. Each video in the Progressive Return to Activity training series is designed to support primary care providers' ability to manage concussion/traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Recommended Content:

Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence | Provider Resources | Provider Education | Traumatic Brain Injury

PRA Training Video 8: Clinical Case Scenario

Video
7/22/2021
Thumbnail image of PRA training video 8, clinical case scenario.

This is an interactive clinical case scenario to test your understanding in applying the Progressive Return to Activity (PRA). We hope this will help medical providers become more familiar with the PRA process when treating service members with concussion. Each video in the PRA training series is designed to support primary care providers' ability to manage concussion/traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Recommended Content:

Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence | Provider Resources | Provider Education | Traumatic Brain Injury

2020 TBICoE Annual Report

Publication
7/9/2021

2020 Traumatic Brian Injury Center of Excellence (TBICoE) Annual Report.

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Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence | Traumatic Brain Injury

TBI Hot Topics Bulletin May 2021

Publication
7/8/2021

The TBI Hot Topics Bulletin is a product of the TBICoE research branch and provides a quarterly summary of TBI research relevant to health care providers. This issue covers research published January to March 2021.

Recommended Content:

Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence | TBICoE Research | Provider Resources | Traumatic Brain Injury

Traumatic Brain Injury: A Guide for Caregivers of Service Members and Veterans

Publication
7/7/2021

The 2021 "Traumatic Brain Injury: A Guide for Caregivers of Service Members and Veterans" is a recovery support tool to assist caregivers of service members and veterans who have sustained a traumatic brain injury at any severity level.

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Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence | Patient and Family Resources | TBI Educators | Traumatic Brain Injury

Aphasia, Caused by Stroke or TBI, is Frustrating and Little Known

Article
6/29/2021
A doctor looking at brain scans

Aphasia is an incurable disease usually caused by stroke that affects all forms of communication.

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Total Force Fitness | Heart Health | Centers of Excellence | Traumatic Brain Injury

TBI Caregiver Support Forms

Form/Template
6/29/2021

This is a fillable and printer-friendly version of the forms available in the "Traumatic Brain Injury: A Guide for Caregivers of Service Members and Veterans."

Recommended Content:

Traumatic Brain Injury | Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence | Patient and Family Resources

NICoE Education Webinar Series: July Poster

Publication
6/25/2021

Service Members and TBI: The Not So Invisible Wound

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Traumatic Brain Injury | TBI Education and Training Events | Centers of Excellence
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