Incurring a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) can change a person’s life. Friends and family members of those afflicted with the injury often misunderstand many of the challenges faced by TBI survivors. Cheryle Sullivan, MD, author of, The Brain Injury Survival Kit: 365 Tips, Tools & Tricks to Deal with Cognitive Function, wrote the book to provide strategies to survivors and loved ones to improve cognitive function and quality of life. She understands the frustrations of life after a TBI, both as a caregiver and survivor.
Dr. Sullivan received her MD degree in 1983 from Michigan State University’s College of Human Medicine. She worked as a family practice doctor in Michigan and Colorado until 2002 when she suffered a TBI. She lost her mother in 1997 at age 61 to a fall that caused a skull fracture and TBI. In 2005, her father had a fall-related TBI and she became his full-time caregiver. Dr. Sullivan has a passion for raising TBI awareness in the medical and lay community, and she volunteers to provide educational presentations on TBI.
After suffering personal heartache dealing with her father’s TBI and her own accident resulting in another TBI in 2005, coupled with her two dogs suffering separate illnesses, Dr. Sullivan decided to start 2007 with a fresh start. Armed with a new attitude that being a doctor was what she did, not who she was, she realized that in the scope of life, being alive and in pretty good physical condition, as well as having the ability and means to take care of herself, was a pretty good thing. She set off to see the rest of the United States and found the inspiration for her book along the way.
Dr. Sullivan’s ultimate goal is to help others dealing with brain injury better understand and deal with the changes in themselves, their family members and their friends. She also hopes to remove the title “Silent Epidemic” from brain injury by speaking publicly wherever and whenever possible. It was through her own journey of self-acceptance and discovery that she was able to complete her book that she had previously set aside and labored so hard to begin to write.
From basic principles to unique solutions for saving time and energy, Sullivan’s book is full of helpful information for those coping with the unique challenges of a brain injury.