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    National Intrepid Center of Excellence to offer training on first-line TBI assessment tool

    National Intrepid Center of Excellence to offer training on first-line TBI assessment tool

    Photo By Megan Garcia | The Walter Reed National Military Medical Center’s National Intrepid Center of...... read more read more



    Story by Megan Garcia 

    National Intrepid Center of Excellence

    The Walter Reed National Military Medical Center’s National Intrepid Center of Excellence in Bethesda, Maryland, is gearing up for March’s Brain Injury Awareness Month with a series of events to increase awareness of traumatic brain injury specifically in service members.

    To date, more than 400,000 service members across the Department of Defense have experienced some form of a TBI according to a report by the Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center, the Defense Department’s office of responsibility for tracking traumatic brain injury data in the U.S. military.

    To help medical professionals better assess and treat service members who may have experienced a concussive event, the NICoE is scheduled to provide training on the Military Acute Concussion Evaluation 2, March 23 from noon to 1 p.m. in the NICoE auditorium.

    “The MACE 2 is the standard for the assessment of concussions in both deployed and garrison settings,” said Dr. Louis M. French, the deputy director for operations at NICoE. “If a person comes in and potentially has had a concussion, this is the tool that is mandated to be used.”

    The MACE 2 is the newest version of the assessment tool and replaces the MACE, which was released in 2007. According to French, the newest version incorporates more recent research in concussion assessment and fits more clearly with other military guidelines and documents such as the progressive return to activity guidelines and the guidelines for mandatory screening after a potential injury event.

    “Both of those documents are intended to be partners to the MACE 2,” said French. “They all really work together in terms of helping people understand the management of a patient with a potential concussion. All of those things are important regulations and have a potential impact on the service members that we see.”

    The training will help medical professionals understand the cohesiveness of these resources as well as some of the newer additions to the MACE 2, which focus more on physical symptoms a person may experience if they have experienced a concussion.

    “If a person gets a concussion, there are a number of different things they can have,” said French. “They can have physical symptoms ¬– dizziness, headaches, etc. They can have cognitive symptoms, such as memory loss or confusion, and emotional symptoms such as irritability. The original MACE was intended to focus mostly on the cognitive symptoms, but there are some other signs of concussions, more physical signs, that weren’t as clearly addressed in the original version, and they include things with balance and eye movement.”

    “Those changes aren’t hard to administer, but you need to be trained because most people don’t learn how to do those kinds of assessments in typical, medical training,” he added.

    French emphasized knowing how to properly use the MACE2 is a critical skill all medical professionals should have and hopes those who can, attend this training.

    He added results from an initial screening help to determine the next steps of care for a service member and are documented in service members’ medical records to be used by other providers in order to track a their progress and recovery.

    To register for the MACE 2 training or to learn more about other Brain Injury Awareness Month events at the NICoE, visit



    Date Taken: 02.25.2020
    Date Posted: 02.25.2020 13:08
    Story ID: 363858
    Location: BETHESDA, MD, US 

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