01 May Webinar: Invisible Dangers: Repetitive Mild Traumatic Brain Injuries and Strangulation in Women Experiencing Intimate Partner Violence
With Eve Valera (Harvard Medical School; Massachusetts General Hospital)
From 1:30 PM until 2:30 PM
National Latin@ Network for Healthy Families and Communities, Casa de Esperanza
Globally, nearly 1 in 3 women over the age of 15 have experienced intimate partner violence (IPV), and several reports have shown that women subjected to IPV experience repetitive mild traumatic brain injuries (rTBIs) at alarmingly high rates. Women have also reported high rates of symptoms (cognitive difficulties, depression, anxiety, sleep problems) that are consistent with outcomes following rTBIs in other populations. However, for women experiencing IPV, many of these symptoms have been overlooked or interpreted as being associated with partner violence itself, rather than TBIs. Consequently, there has been a lack of data that can be used to guide our understanding and ability to address effectively the effects of IPV-related TBIs. This webinar will present data on the effects of IPV-related TBI on women's cognitive and psychological functioning as well as structural and functional neural connectivity. The webinar will also address ways to identify and assess for potential MTBIs as well as ways to improve interactions to more effectively work with women who have experienced IPV-related TBI. As the neural consequences of strangulation may interact with or exacerbate effects of IPV-related TBIs, the webinar also discuss recognizing and understanding strangulation in these women as well.
About the Presenter
Dr. Eve Valera is an Assistant Professor in Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, and a Research Scientist at Massachusetts General Hospital. She has been working in the field of domestic violence for nearly 25 years. Her current work uses a range of methodologies to understand the neural, neuropsychological and psychological consequences of traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) resulting from intimate partner-violence (IPV).
She published one of the first studies examining the prevalence of IPV-related TBI and its relationship to cognitive and psychological functioning, and has more recently provided the first neural mechanistic evidence of IPV-related TBI. Her work is ongoing and expanding to address other potential neural consequences of TBIs from partner violence. She speaks internationally to a range of audiences and relevant stakeholders including law enforcement and judicial personnel, IPV advocates, academic professionals, and women with lived experience.