NTL Issue 18


Register Now for the Eighth World Congress on Brain Injury

The International Brain Injury Association is pleased to announce that the preliminary program for the Eighth World Congress on Brain Injury is now available for viewing on-line. The Congress will be held in Washington, DC, March 10-14, 2010. IBIA is looking forward to a wonderful scientific program with over 100 world renowned experts in the field of brain injury presenting on a variety of topics across the continuum of care. The scientific committee is currently in the process of grading over 650 submitted abstracts and notifications will be e-mailed by mid-December. [full story]

The Developing Brain after TBI: Predicting Long Term Deficits and Services for Children, Adolescents and Young Adults

Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is a leading cause of death and disability in children, adolescents and young adults around the world (WHO, 2009). It is also internationally recognized that TBI can have a negative impact on continued brain maturation and development in young people as they get older and grow into their adult years. A particular challenge for physicians, clinicians and therapists is accurately predicting the long term effects of TBI on young people so that services and supports can be organized before deficits worsen and/or young people fail altogether. Understanding TBI in this population as a developing disability over time can help better manage this disease-like process. This article discusses current neuroscience research regarding brain development and the cumulative indicators related to TBI recovery in order to help professionals better predict the long term needs of children, adolescents and young adults with TBI. [full story]

WHO Global Forum on Trauma Care

The World Health Organization (WHO) held a Global Forum on Trauma Care in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on October 28-29. The aims of the Forum were sixfold: 1) to establish a set of priorities and goals for future advocating about trauma, so that the same messages would be sent out globally on sustainable, affordable improvements in care; 2) define a 10-year plan of action for a united front across organizations world-wide; 3) create key messages and means of disseminating them internationally; 4) write a consensus statement about the Forum's proceedings; 5) start forging tools for advocacy, such as press releases and meetings with governments; 6) consolidate a global network for advocacy with a far-reaching network of people and organizations that actively advocate for trauma care. [full story]

Zolpidem Treatment of Disorders of Consciousness

For many years it was assumed by clinicians and researchers that patients suffering from prolonged disorders of consciousness (DOC, i.e., the vegetative and minimally conscious states) were not candidates for any meaningful treatments. This pessimism was adopted by insurers as well, who typically exclude such patients from active rehabilitation programs. In recent years, however, glimmers of optimism have begun to emerge, fueled by several interrelated lines of research. [full story]

Descriptive Analysis of Children and Adolescents in a Low Response State Following Severe Brain Injury

At the University of Virginia Kluge Children’s Rehabilitation Center, a primary focus is on addressing the needs of children and adolescents who cannot, or do not, regain functional arousal, awareness and communication following a severe brain injury. These children remain in a static, prolonged low response state characteristic of Rancho Los Amigos Levels I, II and III. To enter the program they must have been in this state for a minimum of thirty days. Because of their low response state they do not “qualify for rehabilitation” under the typical criteria from most insurance companies. This often results in difficult choices for the acute medical team and families. [full story]

Residential Design Impacts Quality of Life for Neurodisabled Individuals

IOS Press announces the November 2009 publication of a special issue ofNeuroRehabilitation: An International Journal devoted to residential design for persons with neurodisability. While there is clearly agreement that the nature of the long-term living environment can improve quality of life and minimize safety risks for individuals who are cognitively, behaviorally and/or physically challenged due to neurodisability, residential design factors are often either ignored or minimally considered. This unique issue calls attention to the important topic of community-based residential designs for persons with neurodisabilities by presenting a compendium of cutting edge design perspectives, insights and practical information not available elsewhere. [full story]

People to People Announces Brain Injury Medicine and Neurorehabilitation Delegation to Israel

Dr. Nathan Zasler, Chairperson of the International Brain Injury Association and CEO and Medical Director of The Concussion Care Centre of Virginia, Ltd., and Tree of Life Services, invites you on a unique overseas cultural and professional exchange opportunity. People to People Citizen Ambassador Programs is coordinating a delegation of professionals specializing in brain injury medicine and neurorehabilitation who will travel to Israel from May 28-June 5, 2010. The delegation will combine educational activities and meetings centered on brain injury medicine and neurorehabilitation in Israel with cultural activities highlighting the sights and sounds of the country. Delegates will enjoy insider views of the rehabilitation system in Israel and experience the culture in ways that most travelers never do, from the panoramic views of the Mount of Olives and Garden of Gethsemane to observing professional counterparts in their element. Program details and an application form are available by calling 877.787.2000 or e-mailing. A direct link to the planned itinerary can be found online at: peopletopeople.com/nathanzasler. Please consider joining this exciting exchange!


In order to keep IBIA members apprised of current brain injury literature, NTL editors and editorial board members have prepared a list of recently published articles that may be of interest. [full story]


Founded in 1993, IBIA was created in response to the growing demand from professionals and advocates throughout the world for collaboration and more information on all aspects of brain injury, from prevention to long-term care issues.  Benefits of membership include an annual subscription to the journal Brain Injury as well as quarterly issues of this publication, the International NeuroTrauma Letter. To receive a membership form, click here (pdf)


Join the IBIA Listserv

In an effort to provide global communication among members, IBIA has created a brain injury Listserv.  To sign up for the Listserv, click here. Please note that membership in IBIA is required to join the Listserv.



Volunteers needed to assist with development of ICF Core Sets for TBI

Professionals needed to assist with expert opinions for development of ICF Core Sets for TBI. Must have at least five years experience treating patients with TBI. The goal of the project is to explore professional perspectives on problems of patients with TBI to identify problems in functioning that are important for patients and to quantify these problems using the ICF. The expert survey is an open ended questionnaire that will be completed online. Those persons who agree to serve as experts will be provided an ID number and password in order to enter the data online. This is a volunteer opportunity to assist researchers at the Guttman Institute in Spain with this ICF Core Set research. No financial remuneration will be provided. For further information, please contact Dr. Sara Laxe.

Click here view upcoming brain injury conferences and events.

Editorial Board

Michael Barnes, M.D., United Kindom 
Lucia Braga, Ph.D., Brazil 
Christine Croisiaux, Ph.D., Belgium
Jose Leon-Carrion, Ph.D., Spain 
Donald Stein, Ph.D., United States 
Walter Videtta, M.D., Argentina


International Brain Injury Association




The NeuroTrauma Letter is produced quarterly by the International Brain Injury Association.  Please address editorial questions to 


Editor in Chief 
Nathan D. Zasler, M.D., United States