More soldiers suffering brain injuires

May 4, 2007 at 3:52 PM

WASHINGTON, May 4 (UPI) -- A U.S. congressional task force says the Pentagon needs to screen troops before and after active duty in Iraq or Afghanistan to detect brain injury.

The panel says the Defense Department should develop more brain-injury research and improve specialized care for brain injuries, which often go undetected until injured troops return home, USA Today said Friday.

The newspaper said Congress has authorized $450 million for brain-injury treatment and research.

"The military was blindsided by the number of blast injury victims in Iraq and Afghanistan, and it is clear that the proper resources were never in place to care for them," said Rep. Bill Pascrell, D-N.J., co-chairman and founder of the Congressional Brain Injury Task Force.

Pascrell said as many as 150,000 U.S. troops may have suffered brain injuries in combat zones.

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