Traumatic brain injury

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By sharing your stories and data, you will:
  • help each other live better and uncover the best ways to manage your health today
  • help researchers shorten the path to new treatments tomorrow

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What is traumatic brain injury?

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) occurs when an external force traumatically injures the brain. An open TBI occurs when the skull is penetrated. Closed TBI involves internal injuries to the brain. The injury to brain tissue temporarily or permanently impairs brain function.

Common symptoms reported by people with traumatic brain injury

Common symptoms
How bad it is
What people are taking for it

Reports may be affected by other conditions and/or medication side effects. We ask about general symptoms (anxious mood, depressed mood, fatigue, pain, and stress) regardless of condition.
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Treatments taken by people with traumatic brain injury

Treatment name(s)
Type
How many have tried
Tried for
Treatment name(s)

(Home Physical Therapy)
Type
Physical Therapy
How many have tried
43
Tried for
traumatic brain injury (43) dizziness (1)
Treatment name(s)

(Zoloft)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
36
Treatment name(s)

(Effexor XR)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
21
Tried for
depressed mood (21) migraine headaches (1)
Type
Psychotherapy
How many have tried
20
Tried for
traumatic brain injury (20)
Treatment name(s)

(Topamax)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
19
Tried for
migraine headaches (16) headaches (2)
1 more
Treatment name(s)

(Neurontin)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
17
Tried for
pain (14) migraine headaches (2)
2 more
Treatment name(s)

(Lexapro)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
16
Tried for
depressed mood (14) anxious mood (9)
Treatment name(s)

(Prozac)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
15
Tried for
depressed mood (15)
Treatment name(s)

(Outpatient Occupational Therapy)
Type
Physical Therapy
How many have tried
15
Tried for
traumatic brain injury (15)
Treatment name(s)

(Imitrex)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
15
Tried for
migraine headaches (15)

Data from patients with traumatic brain injury, who reported starting treatments within the last 5 years.
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Compare treatments taken by people with traumatic brain injury

Treatment name(s)
Perceived effectiveness
Side effects
Total evaluations
Tried for
Treatment name(s)

(Home Physical Therapy)
Perceived effectiveness
for traumatic brain injury (25 evaluations)
Side effects
fatigue pain 12 more
Total evaluations
32
Tried for
traumatic brain injury (43) dizziness (1)
Treatment name(s)

(Zoloft)
Perceived effectiveness
for depressed mood (18 evaluations)
Side effects
decreased sex drive (libido) diarrhea 10 more
Total evaluations
21
Treatment name(s)

(Effexor XR)
Perceived effectiveness
for depressed mood (18 evaluations)
Side effects
anxious mood nervousness 8 more
Total evaluations
19
Tried for
depressed mood (21) migraine headaches (1)
Perceived effectiveness
for traumatic brain injury (15 evaluations)
Side effects
agitation flashbacks 7 more
Total evaluations
16
Tried for
traumatic brain injury (20)
Treatment name(s)

(Topamax)
Perceived effectiveness
for migraine headaches (8 evaluations)
Side effects
anorexia nervosa aphasia 10 more
Total evaluations
8
Tried for
migraine headaches (16) headaches (2)
1 more
Treatment name(s)

(Neurontin)
Perceived effectiveness
for pain (9 evaluations)
Side effects
numbness in face rolling pain in upper abdomen and chest 1 more
Total evaluations
10
Tried for
pain (14) migraine headaches (2)
2 more
Treatment name(s)

(Lexapro)
Perceived effectiveness
for depressed mood (12 evaluations)
Side effects
sexual dysfunction decreased sex drive (libido) 9 more
Total evaluations
15
Tried for
depressed mood (14) anxious mood (9)
Treatment name(s)

(Prozac)
Perceived effectiveness
for depressed mood (4 evaluations)
Side effects
auditory hallucinations balance problems 10 more
Total evaluations
6
Tried for
depressed mood (15)
Treatment name(s)

(Outpatient Occupational Therapy)
Perceived effectiveness
for traumatic brain injury (6 evaluations)
Side effects
Hospitalization hostility
Total evaluations
6
Tried for
traumatic brain injury (15)
Treatment name(s)

(Imitrex)
Perceived effectiveness
for migraine headaches (5 evaluations)
Side effects
tongue swelling
Total evaluations
5
Tried for
migraine headaches (15)
  • Major
  • Moderate
  • Slight
  • None
  • Can't tell
  • Severe
  • Moderate
  • Mild
  • None

Data from patients with traumatic brain injury, who reported starting treatments within the last 5 years.
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Who has traumatic brain injury on PatientsLikeMe?


Age
Age Proportion # of patients
<20 75
20s 590
30s 1,878
40s 2,233
50s 1,960
60s 943
70+ 174
Age at first symptom
Age at first symptom Proportion # of patients
0-19 years 286
20-29 years 329
30-39 years 291
40-49 years 283
50-59 years 121
60-69 years 12
70+ years 1

Distribution of sex

Sex
Sex Proportion # of patients
Male 3,829
Female 4,080

Diagnosis status
Diagnosis status Proportion # of patients
Diagnosed 2,290
Not Diagnosed 145

These charts show data from TBI patients who have completed their condition history
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