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June is Brain Injury Awareness Month

Toronto, June 26, 2013

Traumatic Brain Injury: the invisible disability. Brain Injury costs Canadians $3 billion annually. 53 per cent of Toronto's homeless have sustained a TBI. TBI is the leading cause of child death and disability. 27,000 of Ontario school-children have a brain injury. 44 per cent of prisoners have a TBI history.
Brain Injury Awareness Month

The St. Michael’s Hospital Head Injury Clinic was established in 1987 to manage and treat patients who suffer from traumatic brain injury after they received acute care. The clinic is the largest of its kind in Ontario, with 2,000 patient visits a year. This clinic is an interdisciplinary team of experts including a neurorehabilitation specialist, neuropsychologist, neuro-otolaryngologist, a psychiatrist, clinical nurse specialist/case manager, social worker and research coordinators.

The clinic provides interdisciplinary and highly specialized follow-up for the comprehensive management of traumatic brain injury patients. This includes management of physical, behavioural, cognitive, psychological and psychosocial symptoms following a TBI. The main goal is to manage and treat TBI patients until they successfully reintegrate back into the community (e.g. school, work).

The clinic also does extensive clinical research around treatment of TBI, ranging from investigating effective and innovative interventions for common physical symptoms of TBI (headaches, dizziness, depression) to developing improved assessment tools for identification of TBI.

Patients are seen at the clinic on a referral basis. Referrals are received from St. Michael’s Trauma and Emergency Departments as well as community and family physician through the Toronto Acquired Brain Injury Network. The clinic offers a wide range of services including:

  • Early identification of patients who suffer from a traumatic brain injury
  • Access to medical/diagnostic tests and other St. Michael’s physician specialists and clinics
  • Coordination of specialized rehabilitation services outside the hospital (OHIP- and third party-funded services)
  • Patient and family education and support
  • Neuropsychological assessments without third-party funding for work, school, driving related issues and further rehabilitation planning
  • Evaluation and treatment of psychiatric symptoms post-TBI with prompt access to St. Michael’s Psychiatry Department if needed
  • Prompt reassessment of the effectiveness of pharmacological treatments recommended for post-traumatic headache, fatigue, pain, posttraumatic stress disorder and depression.
  • Assessment, diagnosis and treatment of TBI symptoms using pharmacological and non-pharmacological approaches

Contact Information

Office Hours: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday: 8 a.m.-4 p.m.
Telephone Number: 416-864-5520

About St. Michael’s Hospital

St Michael’s Hospital provides compassionate care to all who enter its doors. The hospital also provides outstanding medical education to future health care professionals in 27 academic disciplines. Critical care and trauma, heart disease, neurosurgery, diabetes, cancer care, care of the homeless and global health are among the Hospital’s recognized areas of expertise. Through the Keenan Research Centre and the Li Ka Shing International Healthcare Education Centre, which make up the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute, research and education at St. Michael’s Hospital are recognized and make an impact around the world. Founded in 1892, the hospital is fully affiliated with the University of Toronto.