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From Patients to Students: How the Intrepid Spirit Center in Fort Belvoir is Transforming Traumatic Brain Injury and Post-traumatic Stress Disorder Treatments

Article
2/15/2024
From Patients to Students: How the Intrepid Spirit Center in Fort Belvoir is Transforming Traumatic Brain Injury and Post-traumatic Stress Disorder Treatments

The National Intrepid Center of Excellence at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center is the headquarters of the Defense Intrepid Network for Traumatic Brain Injury and Brain Health, which consists of 10 Intrepid Spirit Centers located at military bases throughout the U.S., in addition to two TBI clinics in Alaska and Germany.

DHA Has Assessment Tool for Sudden, Unexplained Sensory Events

Article
9/7/2023
DHA Has Assessment Tool for Sudden, Unexplained Sensory Events

Sudden brain symptoms need to be evaluated quickly, and might be an anomalous health incident, otherwise known as Havana syndrome.

Walter Reed’s NICoE Scientists to Present New TBI Battlefield Biomarkers Research During 2023 MHSRS

Article
8/16/2023
Dr. Ping-Hong Yeh all smiles at Walter Reed in preparation for presenting new biomarkers TBI research at 2023 MHSRS. Photo Credit: DOD Ricardo Reyesguevarra

Walter Reed National Military Medical Center is pleased to announce that researchers from the National Intrepid Center of Excellence will present a groundbreaking study on diagnosing traumatic brain injuries during the 2023 Military Health System Research Symposium.

Defense Intrepid Network Supports Service Members Across the Continuum

Article
3/1/2023
U.S. Marine Staff Sgt. Anthony Mannino plays guitar as he receives music therapy as part of his traumatic brain injury treatment and recovery. Kalli Jermyn, a music therapy intern, observes, instructs, and works with Mannino. The therapy is conducted at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence, at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. (Department of Defense photo by Marvin Lynchard)

The Defense Intrepid Network for TBI and Brain Health’s Continuum of Caring, Healing, and Thriving initiative, headquartered at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence in Bethesda, Maryland, is a comprehensive interdisciplinary approach to address the full continuum of traumatic brain injury, behavior health, and brain health.

NICoE Deputy Director Receives Department of Defense's Highest Civilian Honor

Article
1/27/2023
U.S. Army Lt. Gen. (Dr.) Ronald J. Place  and Dr. Louis French at award ceremony

The work of one of the Department of Defense’s foremost experts on the treatment of traumatic brain injury was recently honored with the department's highest award given to career DOD civilian employees.

Brain-Boosting Meal Plans Help Service Members with TBI

Article
3/30/2022
During the NICoE intensive outpatient program (IOP), staff nutritionist Ruth Clark teaches hands-on classes in the on-site patient kitchen. (Photo: Tahira Hayes (Ctr), NICoE/WRNMMC, NSA Bethesda)

Research has shown that dietary changes may help relieve symptoms that might complicate recovery from a traumatic brain injury (TBI), such as chronic pain, anxiety, depression, and sleep problems.

Art Therapy at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence

Video
3/23/2022
Art Therapy at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence

Adrienne Stamper, an art therapist at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE), provides a window into the process of healing through art therapy. Art therapists are master’s-level behavioral health professionals who are trained to use art as a vehicle for non-verbal thoughts, emotions, and experiences. At NICoE, the service members have freedom of self-expression and use a wide range of media such as painting, sculpting, drawing, wood-burning, collaging, and creative writing. Stamper explains the scientific basis for why traumatic survivors struggle to put their experience into words, and how art therapy can enable them to find their voice. By working with imagery, the emotional brain, and the physical body, art therapy helps to integrate and restore a sense of control over these painful memories. Stamper walks us through the studio, sharing stories of service members who found healing through art therapy, and shows us the faces of the invisible wounds of war.

Dance and Movement Therapy at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence

Video
3/16/2022
Dance and Movement Therapy at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence

Liz Freeman, lead dance/movement therapist; and Kristine Keliiki, dance/movement therapist at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE), discuss the many ways they use dance movement therapy (DMT) to help patients at the NICoE. DMT is the psychotherapeutic use of movement to promote emotional, social, cognitive, and physical parts of a person in order to improve health and well-being. This brings the body into the treatment process to address behavioral health and rehabilitative goals. Freeman and Keliiki also discuss the history of DMT, citing its birth through a dance for communication program in the Federal Psychiatric Hospital St. Elizabeth’s in the 1940s. March 13 to 19 is Creative Arts Therapies Week. To celebrate, the NICoE created videos highlighting a day in the life of some of our creative art therapies at the NICoE. This video is part of a multipart series.

Music Therapy at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence

Video
3/16/2022
Music Therapy at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence

Nate McLaughlan is a board-certified music therapist at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE). In this video, he discusses the many way music therapy can help patients at the NICoE. He explains that music therapy uses music-based experiences to address identified symptoms and goals with a music therapist who is trained to use elements of music to promote physical, mental, and social health. McLaughlan also describes the different approaches he takes with NICoE patients. They vary from introducing someone to playing an instrument for the first time, revisiting an instrument, figuring out listening strategies, organizing an intentional playlist, and writing music. The music therapy program at the NICoE helps service members and their loved ones connect with themselves and others through music listening, discussion, and making. A unique part of the NICoE music therapy program is each cohort of service members experience interventions as a group, helping ease them into this journey together. March 13 to 19 is Creative Arts Therapies Week. To celebrate, the NICoE created videos highlighting a day in the life of some of our creative art therapies at the NICoE. This video is part of a multipart series.

NICoE, NHRC Team Up To Make CAREN Technology Portable

Article
8/12/2021
A person walks in front of a large virtual reality screen.

Head-mounted display technology has become more affordable and accessible

TRIP initiative bridges the gap between TBI research, clinical care

Article
5/13/2021
a statue of a broken circle

The Defense Intrepid Network launches the TRIP initiative to translate research findings into clinical practice.

MHS Minute March 2021

Video
4/1/2021
MHS Minute March 2021

March marked Brain Injury Awareness month in the military. We're spotlighting efforts across the MHS to combat Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), and better understand how TBI impacts our Service members. For more information about the National Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE), go to walterreed.tricare.mil/NICoE For more info on the Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence (TBICoE), go to Health.mil/TBICoE

New NICoE director sets an ambitious agenda for the future

Article
3/8/2021
Military personnel wearing face mask while talking to each other

The accomplished new leader of the NICoE and Intrepid Spirit Center network has plans for increased services and a higher profile for the unique care center.

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Last Updated: July 11, 2023
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