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Understanding Rehab and Recovery from TBI

References of Interest Re: TBI rehab

Here are some references/links you may find interesting regarding symptoms, resources and rehab/recovery from TBI.

Dr. Clark Elliott, a professor of Artificial Intelligence in Chicago suffered severe symptoms for many years following a motor vehicle accident-related TBI. The story of how he eventually found appropriate care and recovery is fascinating and inspiring. Here is a link to a YouTube interview with him and the book he has written, The Ghost in My Brain.

Dr. Dan Engle is Board Certified in Psychiatry and Neurology. Just prior to beginning medical school he suffered severe head and neck injuries in a diving accident. Over the years, he learned there are many different ways to make a good chocolate chip cookie – or in his case to recover from a brain injury. His book, The Concussion Repair Manual, explores the relatively mainstream, the less mainstream, and the further alternative approaches that he has tried and believes may be helpful. My one reservation with this book is his all but total lack of discussion regarding anything to do with vision. Over half of the brain’s surface is dedicated to processing visual information and 90% of TBI patients experience visual symptoms. I think this is a significant omission. On the other hand, Dr. Elliott’s extensive focus on vision, can act as a counter-balance.

A great resource for all who have experienced a head injury or anything leading to neurological compromise, is the website for the Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation Association – NORA. There’s much more on it than I can even begin to mention here. Please check it out.

Two approaches that we’re very excited about are Photobiomodualtion (PBM) and Pulsed Elector-Magnetic Fields (PEMF). They both show significant promise and may be something you’d like to read more about. Be aware – the PBM article is rather extensive. Here’s a little briefer overview.

HOWEVER, they do not have FDA approval for treating most symptoms you may be experiencing, and we are not recommending you use them or providing medical advice in this communication. The one exception I’m aware of is a device called Cefaly which is approved for migraine treatment and may be recommended and prescribed for appropriate post TBI headache complaints. For a prescription, please speak with your PCP, neurologist, physiatrist, etc…

We do not currently provide visual therapy services to assist in concussion recovery, although we may in the future. We can, however, recommend specific activities to your physical or occupational therapist. Please ask them to contact us if they would like our input.

If you have any questions or would like more in depth information, please feel free to call or email –

Best of luck.

Steve Jacobs OD