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The introduction of extended-use combination oral contraceptives (COCs) in the last decade has helped many women accept the concept of avoiding a monthly bleed and reducing their menstrual periods and withdrawal bleeds to a few times per year. This search for fewer or no periods has also led to the continual use of COCs to suppress menstruation for extended periods of time. Could menstrual suppression be a useful alternative for women in the military, especially those who are deployed and have difficulty managing monthly blood flow?
WASHINGTON, DC—Returning servicemembers are among the some 40 million Americans who suffer from chronic long term sleep disorders, and, for reasons ranging from disrupted sleep during deployment, battlefield stress or even hyper vigilance, their sleep problems can be especially challenging to treat. That is even more the case when post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, pain and traumatic brain injury (TBI) are involved.
WASHINGTON, DC—Military health care beneficiaries currently can access their own health data by choosing the web-based “Blue Button” feature on TRICARE Online (TOL). In an upgrade that will be available before the end of the year, they also will be able to use the site for secure, two-way communication with providers.
WASHINGTON, DC—As more data is emerging on the short and long-term effects of traumatic brain injury (TBI), researchers are discovering that the injury affects women differently than it does men. Most notably, there seems to be a differential pattern of post-concussive symptoms among female compared to male OEF/OIF veterans with deployment–related TBI.
BETHESDA, MD—Due to its ability to track patient health data within its system and to orchestrate initiatives inside what is essentially a unified healthcare program, VA has played a pioneering role in showing how chronic disease treatment, such as for cardiovascular disease, can be improved over large swathes of a patient population.
WASHINGTON, DC—Last summer, DoD issued a policy designed to speed detection of mild traumatic brain injuries (mTBI) on the battlefield. Now, using new technologies to make the process as efficient as possible, the policy is being implemented in theater, according to DoD officials.
WASHINGTON, DC—Health care providers who work with traumatized patients are at risk for their own type of mental condition with symptoms that closely parallel post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The malady, known as “compassion fatigue” can lead to emotional burnout and a range of physical symptoms, according to a recent webinar held by the Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury (DCoE)
WASHINGTON, DC—A parade of military medicine top brass went before a House subcommittee last month to trumpet U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates’ latest attempt to increase TRICARE premiums in the FY 2012 budget. Previous efforts were rejected by Congress, but DoD officials anticipate that the more modest increase this time will have a better chance of passage.
WASHINGTON, DC—The White House recently introduced a government-wide effort to support military families outlined in its report, Strengthening Our Military Families.
WASHINGTON, DC—VHA and DoD have already recognized that they serve the same patients, just at different times during their lives. But it is only during the last few years that the two departments have thought of themselves as a true continuum of care, at least as far as mental health care is concerned, and have endeavored to ease the transition for patients from one system to the other.
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