Repetitive Concussions from Blast and Combat Exposure: Update from the Prospective, Longitudinal Study of the Long-term Impact of Military-Relevant Brain Injury Consortium, 2013-2021
David X. Cifu, M.D., Associate Dean for Innovation and System Integration, VCU School of Medicine; Senior Traumatic Brain Injury Specialist, U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs; Chair, Department of PM&R, VCU School of Medicine
Wed. May 25, 2022
12:55 – 1:20 p.m.
Washington Room, Hotel Roanoke
Mild Traumatic Brain Injury was the “signature injury” of the Iraq and Afghan Wars of the 2000’s, with more than 350,000 service members being affected. Beginning in 2007, a nationwide system of Polytrauma Rehabilitation was established across the U.S. Departments of Defense (DoD) and Veterans Affairs (VA) to provide acute and chronic care in a uniform and evidence-based manner. Many of the American Heroes affected by these combat concussions continued to have persistent symptoms despite the comprehensive care systems in place, so in 2013, the DoD/VA funded the Chronic Effects of Neurotrauma Consortium (CENC) at Virginia Commonwealth University to establish a nationwide program of collaborative researchers to study both the short and long-term sequelae and outcomes of these military brain injuries, with specific focus on co-morbidities (PTSD, depression, pain, substance use), blast injury, repetitive insults, innovative treatment approaches and linkages to neurodegeneration, including dementia and Parkinson’s disease. Initially funded for $62.2 million and now renewed in 2019 for $50 million, the renamed Longterm Impact of Military-relevant Brain Injury Consortium (LIMBIC) has completed 11 research studies and is now focused on performing epidemiologic and health economic analyses on a big database of more than 2 million unique service members and Veterans and monitoring the prospective recovery and long-term outcomes of more than 3,000 combat-exposed service members and Veterans. are potential results of these military-relevant injuries. An update on the state of LIMBIC’s research, an overview of findings, and next steps will be presented.