Refugees fleeing war or torture are exposed to increased risk of traumatic brain injury from exposure to blunt force (beatings) and penetrations (bullets, shrapnel) injuries, to concussive effects (bomb blasts). Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) complicates the psychological treatment and rehabilitation of trauma survivors demanding a multi-modal, brain-based approach to therapy. One such approach uses EEG to identify abnormal patterns of brain activity that might correlate with specific cognitive or emotional problems.
In this, EEG can complement cognitive and psychological testing and the clinical interview, to deepen our understanding of the client’s presenting symptoms, help us choose the appropriate treatment modality, and evaluate the effectiveness of the treatment. To illustrate this, the case study of a 50 year old Burundian client with a history of brain trauma and PTSD will be presented. In this case, neurofeedback therapy was used to teach the client to regulate his brain activity and ultimately improve his sleep and cognitive functioning.