Most patients with mild traumatic brain injury, or concussion, will have no long-term effects. A small group may have some longer lasting, or even permanent, symptoms. Irritability, anxiety and depression are the most common lasting problems. Challenges relating to movement, balance, attention span, concentration, judgment and reaction time can also be found in some patients.
In combat, the effects of a concussion can be potentially dangerous, putting others at risk. Even mild traumatic brain injury can affect a service member’s ability to drive, handle weapons, establish situational awareness, follow rules of engagement or control aggression. These factors are considered when making return-to-duty decisions.