Military Life

Understanding The Wounds Of Our Wars

James Clark Avatar

“Imagine an injury with no outward symptoms that could take years to manifest. Now imagine you don’t even know specifically how that injury occurs,” writes Army Magazine’s John Crawford, about the complexities of traumatic brain injury and post traumatic stress disorder. “When a bullet or a hunk of shrapnel enters the body, clinicians and scientists can track the path it took by studying the flesh. They can calculate the ballistics and the angle of entry, but what about pressure waves, which are essentially invisible?”

The signature wound of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, traumatic brain injury occurs when a trauma disrupts the brain and produces physical, emotional, and cognitive deficits. Often times, those diagnosed with TBI also suffer from PTSD, leading to a complex combination of symptoms.