"The data, provided by the Army, Navy and Department of Veterans Affairs, show that about five times as many troops sustained brain trauma as the 4,471 officially listed by the Pentagon through Sept. 30. These cases also are not reflected in the Pentagon's official tally of wounded, which stands at 30,327."
Rep. Bill Pascarell (D-NJ) puts the figures much higher than USA Today's figures of 20,500+. Pascarell, founder of the Congressional Brain Injury Task Force, says more than 150,000 troops may have suffered head injuries in combat.
"I am wary that the number of brain-injured troops far exceeds the total number reported injured," he says.Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is the signature injury of this war, where troops suffer concussive brain damage due to exposure to IED blasts. While the troop may suffer no obvious visible trauma, the damage has been done and often will not manifest until some time following the injury. It has been suggested that many of these injuries may prove to be every bit as debilitating as a severe body wound, with a longevity which is unknown.
Yet due to the marvelous accounting legerdemain that emanates from the Pentagon,
"Soldiers and Marines whose wounds were discovered after they left Iraq are not added to the official casualty list, says Army Col. Robert Labutta, a neurologist and brain injury consultant for the Pentagon."
So not only are these soldiers not counted in the official wounded list, they will have a fight ahead to prove their injuries were legitimately sustained in the field. And the taxpayers are given an inaccurate estimate of the actual cost of the war once again, in terms of long-range care and disability payments for these excluded injured troops.