Georgia, South Carolina
John L. Rigg, M.D., FAAPMR, Physiatrist
DVBIC Site Director
Dr. Rigg practices medicine, teaches, conducts research and manages the day-to-day operation of the Traumatic Brain Injury Clinic, which has more than 20 employees. He is also the medical director for NeuroRestorative Georgia.
Dr. Rigg lectures frequently on traumatic brain injury (TBI) and has spoken on behalf of the North American Brain Injury Society, Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation and Allied Force Protection. He has published on a myriad of topics related to TBI in high-impact journals, such as Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Journal of Head Trauma and Military Medicine. Recent peer reviewed papers reflect topics exploring the clinical benefit of nutritional supplementation and nutriceuticals on brain function, concussion issues specific to military personnel, transcendental meditation and medication management in service members with TBI and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
He also has authored several book chapters focusing on the pharmacologic management of behavioral and cognitive impairment in brain-injured adults, medical management of adults with neurologic disability and concussion and PTSD-related war trauma. Dr. Rigg is a member of the Central Nervous System Rehabilitation Council of the American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation and of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
Dr. Rigg also founded and is the program director of the Functional Recovery Program for TBI.
He graduated from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City in 2001. Dr. Rigg completed his residency in physical medicine and rehabilitation at the Kessler Institute/ University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey in 2005 and completed a fellowship in traumatic brain injury at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center in 2006. He is board certified in Brain Injury Medicine.
The TBI Clinic at EAMC was the first program in the U.S. to be awarded full validation as a Category 1 TBI Center in accordance with the Office of the Surgeon General’s Proponency for Rehabilitation and Reintegration (2009).
EAMC was officially established as a DVBIC Site in 2016.
The Fort Gordon site of DVBIC extends the center’s overall mission by providing education and comprehensive clinical care services for TBI and associated co-morbidities for our region’s active-duty, reserve, National Guard, retiree, and beneficiary populations. Fort Gordon also conducts TBI research within its’ military population and has an expanding research portfolio.
Our Capabilities and Staff
Our robust multidisciplinary team is comprised of experienced brain injury providers and embedded behavioral health and rehabilitation staff. At our center, patients have the opportunity to work with a variety of physicians and specialists including:
- Board Certified Medical Providers in Physiatry, Neurology, Psychiatry
- Rehabilitation Therapists (Physical, Recreational Occupational, and Speech and Language, Specialists)
- Clinical Psychologists
- Physician Assistants and Nursing/Technician Staff
- Clinical Social Workers
- Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Physicians
Many of our service members enter our clinic with complex TBI needs including the common comorbidities/symptoms associated with TBI such as post-traumatic stress, stress-related disorders, depression, sleep disorders, pain, cognitive/memory impairments, and substance abuse among other symptoms. Our team therefore works collaboratively with EAMC’s Neurology Service, Interdisciplinary Pain Management Center, Outpatient Behavioral Health Service, Residential Treatment Facility Inpatient Substance Abuse Service, and Chaplain Services. These collaborative relationships allow extension to and inclusion of additional clinical and base support resources while also bolstering referrals to and from our clinic.
Clinical Services: Our Program
Our Functional Recovery Program for TBI was established in 2009 and is an innovative three-week, intensive, outpatient, multidisciplinary treatment program. The focus of the program is on service members who have deployed to combat and sustained one or more concussions (some of the concussions may be non-combat-related) with subsequent refractory or re-occurring symptoms. The program is also equipped to treat the common comorbidities/symptoms associated with TBI, post-traumatic stress/stress-related disorders, depression, sleep disorders, pain, cognitive/memory impairments, and substance abuse).
Some of the goals of the Functional Recovery Program include gaining perspective on injuries, empowering service members with knowledge of resources to assist in the management/alleviation of common TBI and comorbidity symptoms, instilling hope for the management of symptoms and facilitating as complete a recovery as is possible. Our program is designed to help service members return to duty or to identify alternate military ocupational services and/or explore vocational/avocational or educational alternatives, and successful military or community re-entry.
Screening and Assessment Capabilities
Our neurological screening and assessment capabilities include:
- Electroencephalogram (EEG) Studies
- ANAM-IV Pre-Deployment Baseline Cognitive Testing
- Neuropsychological Screening/Assessment
- Driving Simulator Training/Evaluation
Since each TBI patient presents with different symptoms, co-morbidities and needs, our treatment encompasses a myriad of approaches and techniques which can be tailored to a patient’s unique needs. Approaches can include medical management of symptoms, psychotherapy/counseling, education, mind-body medicine approaches, cognitive rehabilitation, occupational and physical therapies, and recreational outings. Some of the different components to our interdisciplinary approach include:
- Transcendental Meditation®
- Myofacial Trigger Point Release
- Reclamation of Self/ Spirituality
- Healing Touch
- Return to Duty
- Aquatic Therapy
- Community Re-entry
- Smoking Cessation
- Family Re-integration
- Sleep Hygiene
- Pain Management
Education and Outreach
Education and outreach across our catchment area, which includes the state of Georgia, provides:
- Patient and family education
- Health care provider education
- Professional and ancillary staff education
TBI Recovery Support Program
Please visit: http://dvbic.dcoe.mil/tbi-recovery-support-program
A study of bilateral prefrontal transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to treat the symptoms of mild TBI (mTBI) and PTSD (Multisite study with WRAMMC, Principal Investigator: Paul Pasquina, M.D., Site Principal Investigator: Scott Mooney, Ph.D.)
Chronic Effects of Neurotrauma Consortium (CENC) Study 1: Observational Study on Late Neurological Effects of OEF/OIF/OND Combat (Principal Investigator: William Walker, M.D., Site Principal Investigator: Scott Mooney, Ph.D.)