Research Reports - Social and behavioral outcomes following childhood traumatic brain injury

J Neurotrauma. 2014 Apr 28

Catroppa C(1), Crossley L, Hearps SJ, Yeates KO, Beauchamp MH, Rogers K, Anderson V.

This study aimed to extend the limited research investigating social and
behavioral outcomes following childhood traumatic brain injury (TBI). The study
compared pre-and post-injury measures of these skills and investigated the role
of pre-injury child status and pre-injury family functioning in the prediction of
outcome at 6 months post-injury. A secondary aim was to compare rates of
impairment at 6 months post-injury between children post-TBI and a typically
developing (TD) control group. This study comprised 140 children, 97 survivors of
TBI (67 males) and 43 TD children (24 males), matched for age, sex and SES. All
participants were ascertained between 2007 and 2010, and were aged between 5.5
and 15 years. Children with TBI represented consecutive hospital admissions and
were recruited at time of injury into a longitudinal study. TD children were
recruited from the community, through local schools chosen to provide a range of
socio-economic backgrounds. Findings indicated a deterioration of social
participation skills post-injury, particularly for those sustaining a more severe
injury, and a consistently higher rate of impairment in social and behavioral
outcomes in the TBI group. Pre-injury function, injury severity and restrictions
to social participation (e.g.: reduced sport activities), as recommended by
clinicians, contributed significantly to outcome. Difficulties are evident in the
short-term post childhood TBI in social and behavioral domains. It is essential
to monitor children long-term, particularly as societal expectations and demands
increase.

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