On January 8, 2020, Iran launched a retaliatory attack on the al Asad military base in Iraq, after the United States struck one of its top generals earlier. By January 30, 2020, sixty-four of our 200 military personnel at the base had been diagnosed with mild Traumatic Brain Injuries. The Pentagon reported that this number is likely to change because, for the most part, mild Traumatic Brain Injuries takes time for symptoms to manifest.
Several of the soldiers with mild traumatic brain injuries were evacuated to Germany or the United States for treatment for their mild Traumatic Brain Injuries.
While we are proud to see the military taking these injuries so seriously, it is clear there is still a long way to go when the President said “he does not consider these injuries to be as serious as physical combat wounds.” In typical fashion, when asked about his comment, he chose to double down on the ignorant statement.
Mild Traumatic Brain Injury, as we have explained before, is not classified as mild due to its symptoms or severity. Instead, the classification refers only to the degree of loss of consciousness present at the initial injury.
The Center for Disease Control has labeled traumatic brain injury a serious public health concern that results in death and disability for thousands of people each year. In 2014, there were approximately 2.5 million TBI related ER visits in the United States, including over 812,000 among children.
We at NL hope you will join such prestigious organizations as the Veterans’ of Foreign Wars (VFW) in demanding the president acknowledge the seriousness of traumatic brain injuries and work towards seeing that this dangerous epidemic receive the recognition and treatment it so desperately needs.
A report on CNN just announced that over 100 service members have now been diagnosed with MTBI from this attack, an increase of at least 36 people from the 64 previously announced by the Pentagon.
This confirms the difficulty in diagnosing this insidious condition and the delay in doing so even when focused on the possibility it is present.