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Veterans' Advocate Calls on V.A. to Research Potential Damage from Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) in Iraq & Afghan War Veterans

Citizen Soldier has written VA Administrator Shinsheki on February 23d demanding that his agency immediately fund research as to whether Iraq and Afghan war veterans suffer from CTE, which could be caused by Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) widely used in both wars.

At least twenty professional football players suffer from CTE which can cause depression, cognitive impairment including memory loss and sometimes suicide (NY Times)

"While football players probably suffer more frequent blows to their heads, the gross impact of a single IED detonation is much more severe," noted Tod Ensign, Citizen Soldier Director.

A Rand study last year estimated that over 300,000 Iraq and Afghan war vets suffered from traumatic brain injury (TBI) from mild to severe.

Boston University's Center for the Study of Traumatic Encephalopathy is currently researching CTE on former football players under a $1 million grant from the NFL. Citizen Soldier urges VA Administrator Shinsheki to meet with the Center's researchers and arrange for them to conduct a pilot study of Iraq and Afghan vets who've been diagnosed with TBI.

For more information: (212) 509-3058