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Press Release

January 22, 2003
Contact: CDC, Injury Media Relations
(770) 488-4902

CDC Unveils New Toolkit to Help Physicians Prevent and Treat Brain Injuries

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) today unveiled Heads Up Brain Injury in your Practice, a tool kit for physicians. The tool kit is designed to raise physicians' awareness about the public health problem of mild traumatic brain injury (MTBI) and to improve treatment for patients with MTBI. MTBI, also known as concussion, is one of the most common neurological disorders. The kit is part of a larger initiative directed by CDC's Injury Center.

"Physicians can play a key role in helping to prevent concussions and in helping patients who experience one, when it does occur," Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy G. Thompson said. "This tool kit will help physicians communicate with their patients and their family members about brain injury and prevention."

Approximately 1.5 million people sustain traumatic brain injuries in this country every year. Of those, approximately 1.1 million, or 75 percent sustain a MTBI. Yet, many are released from medical care without hospitalization or never receive medical care at all. An unknown proportion of those who are not hospitalized may experience long-term disability such as persistent headache, confusion, pain, memory problems, fatigue, difficulties with sleep patterns, mood changes, or vision or hearing problems.

"It is our hope that we can foster better treatment, and provide better follow-up care of patients with MTBI," said Dr. Julie Louise Gerberding, Director of CDC.

The kit provides doctors clinical information on incidence, prevention strategies, diagnosis, and treatment, patient education materials, including tips on preventing brain injuries, and a booklet for patients already diagnosed with a brain injury, Facts about Concussion and Brain Injury (English and Spanish versions), and a CD-ROM with relevant scientific articles and downloadable kit materials.

For copies of the tool kit, email

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CDC protects people's health and safety by preventing and controlling diseases and injuries; enhances health decisions by providing credible information on critical health issues; and promotes healthy living through strong partnerships with local, national, and international organizations.

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This page last updated January 22, 2003

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