Research Reports - raumatic brain injury, sleep, and mental health
J Head Trauma Rehabil. 2017 Jan/Feb;32(1):25-33. doi:
Holster JL(1), Bryan CJ, Heron EA, Seegmiller RA.
OBJECTIVE: We investigated the complex relationships between traumatic brain
injury (TBI), sleep, and mental health problems longitudinally among US service
members (SMs) pre- and postdeployment to Iraq.
PARTICIPANTS: One hundred sixty-eight SMs enrolled in a 4-week Air Force Basic
Combat Convoy Course predeployment.
DESIGN: Self-report data were collected at the beginning and end of training and
then at 1, 3, 6, and 12 months postdeployment. Regression analyses were
implemented, and participants were categorized into 4 groups based on TBI history
for further statistical analysis.
RESULTS: Positive TBI history was associated with greater symptoms of insomnia
and posttraumatic stress predeployment and persistence of insomnia symptoms,
posttraumatic stress, and depression postdeployment. Positive TBI history and
posttraumatic stress served as risk factors for head injury in Iraq, and SMs who
reported a head injury during deployment also endorsed greater posttraumatic
stress postdeployment than those without head injury. SMs with positive TBI
history who also reported a new TBI in Iraq endorsed the greatest sleep and
mental health problems across the study period.
CONCLUSIONS: This study provides valuable information regarding temporal
relationships between TBI, sleep, and mental health problems among a combat
military population. Findings have important implications from both prevention
and clinical perspectives.