The Impact of Combat Ocular Trauma and Traumatic Brain Injury on Vision- and Health-Related Quality of Life Among U.S. Military Casualties

Rose K. Sia, Denise S. Ryan, Daniel I. Brooks, Janice M. Kagemann, Kraig S. Bower, Louis M. French, Grant A. Justin, Marcus H. Colyer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: The purpose of this study was to assess visual and health-related quality of life (QOL) among U.S. military service members who sustained combat ocular trauma (COT) with or without associated traumatic brain injury (TBI). Methods: This was a single-center, prospective observational study of U.S. service members (n = 88) with COT who were treated at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. Participants completed the National Eye Institute Visual Function Questionnaire (VFQ-25) at enrollment and at follow-up (>1 year) and supplemental surveys: Neurobehavioral Symptom Inventory, the Medical Outcomes 36-item Short Form Survey (SF-36), and Mayo-Portland Adaptability Inventory. Results: Initial and follow-up VFQ-25 showed a statistically significant increase in median scores for near activities (initial: 75.0, follow-up 83.3; P =. 004) and peripheral vision (initial: 50.0, follow-up: 75.0; P =. 009) and in composite scores (initial: 79.5, follow-up: 79.8; P =. 022). Comparing those who did (n = 78) and did not (n = 8) have a TBI history, there were no significant differences in median change in VFQ-25 composite scores (with TBI: 2.3 vs. no TBI: 10.7; P =. 179). Participants with a TBI history had a significantly lower median SF-36 General Health score (with TBI: 67.5 vs. no TBI: 92.5; P =. 009) Conclusions: Vision-related QOL of COT patients is generally good in the long term. However, those with both COT and a history of TBI conditions showed significantly worse functioning in several domains than those without TBI. As TBI is a common finding in COT, this association is an important factor impacting this population's overall clinical presentation and daily functions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)209-215
Number of pages7
JournalMilitary Medicine
Volume187
Issue number1-2
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2022
Externally publishedYes

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