Many veterans do not realize they have suffered concussion injury. Injury results in the dissolution of families, alcohol and drug abuse, loss of employment, homelessness and suicide. Misdiagnosis with PTSD typically results in medication being prescribed which aggravates their condition. There is a huge at-risk population of veterans – not only for the immediate consequences of brain injury but for early onset of neurodegenerative disease conditions like Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and ALS.
Saved by his buddies! Our Special Operations Forces (SOFs) are at the most risk due to their heavy exposure to blast forces. A recent Army Ranger Veteran I treated in my clinic had had many deployments with parachute jumps, IED’s / other blasts and missions “breeching” doors. Explosion after explosion after explosion. His exposure to concussive forces was too extensive to quantify. As a veteran out of the military, he had been despondent for years; had psychiatric diagnoses by the VA system and was prescribed medications. He had become suicidal. One night he spoke to an Army Ranger buddy who recognized he was in danger: within hours a team of Ranger buddies showed up at his house in a snowstorm and put him on a plane to Phoenix. In Phoenix he was met by another Ranger buddy who brought him to my Patriot Clinic for treatment. After an initial 40 hyperbaric oxygen treatments (HBOT), this veteran was looking forward to living the rest of his life and making plans for his future.