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Traumatic Brain Injury and Depression

Slide: 4 of 25

Background: Public Health Impact of Traumatic Brain Injury (1 of 2)

TBI is responsible for roughly 1.2 million emergency department visits each year, with one in four patients requiring hospitalization. Because most estimates of TBI rates are based on hospital use, some individuals with TBI are not counted because they do not seek care or they seek care in other settings. This may be especially true for patients with mild TBI, particularly in the presence of sports-related injury. The severity of TBIs is most commonly categorized by using the Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS): scores of 13–15 are mild, 9–12 are moderate, and 3–8 are severe. Most TBIs are mild, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimate that 75% of civilian TBIs fall into this category. Much of the research in the nonmilitary population, especially on mild TBI, is derived from the sports injury literature. Because athletes tend to represent a healthier subpopulation, this literature may not be entirely applicable to the general population of individuals who sustain a TBI.