No Miracle “Cures” — The Journey Of Overcoming Brain Injury

In The Nature Of Head Injury, an article published in the book Traumatic Brain Injury and Vocational Rehabilitation, Thomas Kay, Ph.D. and Muriel Lezak, Ph.D, attempt to debunk the most common myths surrounding brain injury.

One of the myths dispelled in the article is known as “The Lourdes Effect.”

The reference is to the town in France (Lourdes) where miraculous cures of illness are reputed to take place. There are many families who firmly believe that some “miracle” will occur after brain injury and return their loved one to normalcy (recovery).

The truth is, the journey towards overcoming brain injury has no shortcuts. There is no miracle “cure”.

One of the biggest issues with “The Lourdes Effect”, is that it compels victims and families alike to seek this miracle — often, at the cost of overlooking professionals and other people who could be of great help, in the search of results that are unrealistic.

The solution lies not in finding the right “cure”, but in helping patients and families become aware of and accepting the limitations and developing new goals and expectations.

In trying to help our loved ones overcome their injury, we must keep realistic expectations — the journey is in helping them have the best quality of life possible.


This post is a part of the Debunking Ten Myths Of “Recovery” series. If you are interested in reading the rest of the series, you can view the rest of the posts on the Ten Recovery Myths tag.

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