April 30, 2018

Weapons Training Likely Causes Brain Injury in Troops, Study Says

Source: The Wall Street Journal

Journalist: Ben Kesling

Thousands of U.S. troops are likely suffering traumatic brain injury not just from battlefield explosions but from repeated exposure to trauma while training on their own weapons, according to a new study.

Service members, even those who may not have seen combat but specialize in using high explosives or weapons such as rocket launchers, could have lasting brain damage from the pounding on their necks and heads, researchers at the Center for a New American Security said in a report released Monday. The defense think tank is a nonprofit organization funded by the federal government and public- and private-sector donors.

“It’s analogous to people getting hits to the head in sports, playing football or boxing,” said Paul Scharre, a senior fellow at the center. “This is not really well understood, the primary blast effects on the brain. Exactly how it affects the brain is unclear, but the fact that it is having some kind of negative effect is now being shown.”

Read the Full Article at The Wall Street Journal


  • Paul Scharre

    Executive Vice President and Director of Studies

    Paul Scharre is the Executive Vice President and Director of Studies at CNAS. He is the award-winning author of Four Battlegrounds: Power in the Age of Artificial Intelligence...

  • Lauren Fish

    Former Research Associate, Defense Program

    Lauren Fish is a former Research Associate with the Defense Program and Future of Warfare Initiative at the Center for a New American Security (CNAS). Prior to joining CNAS, ...