Loss of Consciousness, Depression, Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, and Suicide Risk Among Deployed Military Personnel With Mild Traumatic Brain Injury

National Center for Veterans Studies, University of Utah, Salt Lake City (Drs Bryan and Rudd)
The Journal of head trauma rehabilitation (Impact Factor: 2.92). 10/2012; 28(1). DOI: 10.1097/HTR.0b013e31826c73cc
Source: PubMed


OBJECTIVE:: To identify clinical variables associated with suicidality in military personnel with mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) while deployed to Iraq. SETTING:: Outpatient TBI clinic on a US military base in Iraq. PARTICIPANTS:: Military personnel (N = 158) referred to an outpatient TBI clinic for a standardized intake evaluation, 135 (85.4%) who had a diagnosis of mTBI and 23 (14.6%) who did not meet criteria for TBI. MAIN MEASURES:: Suicidal Behaviors Questionnaire-Revised, Depression subscale of the Behavioral Health Measure-20, Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Checklist-Military Version, Insomnia Severity Index, self-report questionnaire, and clinical interview addressing TBI-related symptoms. RESULTS:: Among patients with mTBI, increased suicidality was significantly associated with depression and the interaction of depression with posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms. Longer duration of loss of consciousness was associated with decreased likelihood for any suicidality. CONCLUSION:: Assessment after TBI in a combat zone may assist providers in identifying those at risk for suicidality and making treatment recommendations for service members with mTBI.

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Available from: Craig J Bryan, Feb 11, 2014
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    • "Hence we evaluated the severity of TBI with GCS rather than LOC in the present study. LOC is frequently related to deficient memory of trauma, which is generally assumed to be associated with less likelihood to develop psychiatric complications [26,27]. In our research, we considered LOC as one of potential risk factors for the development of sleep disturbance after TBI. "
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    ABSTRACT: Sleep disturbance is very common following traumatic brain injury (TBI), which may initiate or exacerbate a variety of co-morbidities and negatively impact rehabilitative treatments. To date, there are paradoxical reports regarding the associations between inherent characteristics of TBI and sleep disturbance in TBI population. The current study was designed to explore the relationship between the presence of sleep disturbance and characteristics of TBI and identify the factors which are closely related to the presence of sleep disturbance in TBI population.
    Preview · Article · Oct 2013 · PLoS ONE
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    ABSTRACT: Importance Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is believed to be one factor contributing to rising suicide rates among military personnel and veterans. This study investigated the association of cumulative TBIs with suicide risk in a clinical sample of deployed military personnel referred for a TBI evaluation.Objective To determine whether suicide risk is more frequent and heightened among military personnel with multiple lifetime TBIs than among those with no TBIs or a single TBI.Design Patients completed standardized self-report measures of depression, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and suicidal thoughts and behaviors; clinical interview; and physical examination. Group comparisons of symptom scores according to number of lifetime TBIs were made, and generalized regression analyses were used to determine the association of cumulative TBIs with suicide risk.Participants Patients included 161 military personnel referred for evaluation and treatment of suspected head injury at a military hospital’s TBI clinic in Iraq.Main Outcomes and Measures Behavioral Health Measure depression subscale, PTSD Checklist–Military Version, concussion symptoms, and Suicide Behaviors Questionnaire–Revised.Results Depression, PTSD, and TBI symptom severity significantly increased with the number of TBIs. An increased incidence of lifetime suicidal thoughts or behaviors was associated with the number of TBIs (no TBIs, 0%; single TBI, 6.9%; and multiple TBIs, 21.7%; P = .009), as was suicidal ideation within the past year (0%, 3.4%, and 12.0%, respectively; P = .04). The number of TBIs was associated with greater suicide risk (β [SE] = .214 [.098]; P = .03) when the effects of depression, PTSD, and TBI symptom severity were controlled for. A significant interaction between depression and cumulative TBIs was also found (β = .580 [.283]; P = .04).Conclusions and Relevance Suicide risk is higher among military personnel with more lifetime TBIs, even after controlling for clinical symptom severity. Results suggest that multiple TBIs, which are common among military personnel, may contribute to increased risk for suicide.
    Full-text · Article · May 2013 · JAMA Psychiatry
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