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Auditory and vestibular dysfunction associated with blast-related traumatic brain injury

Stephen A. Fausti, PhD, et al.

The increase in blast exposure in recent military conflicts has led to a surge in traumatic brain injury (TBI) and associated auditory damage. Auditory dysfunction has become the most common individual service-connected disability, and damage from blast exposure can cause many different types of problems. These problems are particularly challenging in patients with TBI because symptoms can be mistaken for posttraumatic stress disorder and mental health or cognitive issues. Auditory assessment tools must be developed and used by a multidisciplinary team to assess the auditory system. A comprehensive evaluation must be completed in polytrauma patients to ensure that all injuries are accurately diagnosed and appropriate rehabilitation can be devised. Effective treatment and hearing loss protection programs can also reduce the potential for the medical and socioeconomic consequences of hearing loss and ultimately allow patients to retain a better quality of life.

Volume 46 Number 6, 2009
   Pages 797 — 810

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