The Army is designing a new lethal hand grenade that can switched from fragmentation to a concussion grenade. Called the “enhanced tactical multipurpose hand grenade,” it will fill a capability gap from 1975, when the MK3A2 concussion grenade was taken out of service due to an asbestos hazard, according to an Army news release.
While medical research into traumatic brain injuries is not new, our ability to identify and subsequently treat them, has leapt forward in the last decade and a half, owed in large part to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Traumatic brain injury is pervasive in both civilian and military populations. In fact, TBI in the civilian population is eight times as frequent as breast cancer, AIDS, spinal-cord injury, and multiple sclerosis combined. According to the Center for Deployment Psychology, an estimated 10–20% of all service members who served in operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom sustained a TBI, with most being concussions, or mild TBIs — mild TBIs are also sometimes called concussions. As such, TBI is a “hot topic” in the military community. However, TBI and its causes, symptoms, and treatment are often misunderstood, and this misunderstanding can lead to a mistreatment of the individuals with TBI and a mishandling of the issues surrounding TBI. Several myths about TBI appear to contribute to this misunderstanding. Below, several such myths are addressed.