Objective: To determine if history of mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) is associated with advanced or accelerated brain aging among the United States (US) military Service Members and Veterans. Methods: Eight hundred and twenty-two participants (mean age = 40.4 years, 714 male/108 female) underwent MRI sessions at eight sites across the US. Two hundred and one participants completed a follow-up scan between five months and four years later. Predicted brain ages were calculated using T1-weighted MRIs and then compared with chronological ages to generate an Age Deviation Score for cross-sectional analyses and an Interval Deviation Score for longitudinal analyses. Participants also completed a neuropsychological battery, including measures of both cognitive functioning and psychological health. Result: In cross-sectional analyses, males with a history of deployment-related mTBI showed advanced brain age compared to those without (t(884) = 2.1, p = .038), while this association was not significant in females. In follow-up analyses of the male participants, severity of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression symptoms, and alcohol misuse were also associated with advanced brain age. Conclusion: History of deployment-related mTBI, severity of PTSD and depression symptoms, and alcohol misuse are associated with advanced brain aging in male US military Service Members and Veterans.
- mild brain injury
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Neuroscience (miscellaneous)
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Clinical Neurology