In 2009 the battlefield injuries of troops in Iraq is a historic low but this includes all injuries some so minor it would not have caused the troop to be pulled from duty. The seriously injured in action who die before they reach medical care is 15.5 percent, in comparison Vietnam it was twenty percent, this rate remained fairly stabled for the whole Vietnam war. However the death rate for the seriously injured in Iraq has risen since 2005 (11 ).
Brain injuries account for 22 percent of all casualties in Afghanistan and Iraq, and is about twice the rate for Vietnam (12 ).
Brett J. Theeler, MD, of Madigan Army Medical Center in Tacoma, WA, and a member of the American Academy of Neurology said "Mild traumatic brain injury is occurring in 15 to 25 percent of soldiers deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan,". He conducted research that tied headaches with traumatic brain injury and also said "The associated headaches can be a source of impaired occupational functioning. These findings should alert health care providers, especially those affiliated with the military or veteran health care systems, to the need to identify and properly treat headache among soldiers." (13 )
Compensation for mental illness among veterans is uneven, has little basis on science, and it could discourage Veterans from getting better. the Institute of Medicine looked into the system on the request of the VA. The current system PTSD suffers and caught in a catch 22 ."You can't get a disability payment if you get a job -- that's not a logical way to proceed in terms of providing an incentive to become healthier and a more productive member of society," said Nancy Andreasen of the University of Iowa (14 ).
Studies show that service personnel serving in Iraq and Afghanistan have shown significant level of mental health problems. A study by Rand showed that a third of military members returning home from combat zones server mental health problems. Such as nearly 300,000 had major depression or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, another 320,000 had suffered brain injuries (15 ).
The National Center for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder said close to thirty percent suffer from PTSD (16 ).
Serious family dysfunction can result from posttraumatic stress disorder. Monica Matthieu, Ph.D., an expert on veteran mental health and an assistant professor of social work at Washington University in St. Louis said "The increasing number of veterans with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) raises the risk of domestic violence and its consequences on families and children in communities across the United States," and noted "Treatments for domestic violence are very different than those for PTSD. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has mental health services and treatments for PTSD, yet these services need to be combined with the specialized domestic violence intervention programs offered by community agencies for those veterans engaging in battering behavior against intimate partners and families." (17 ).