Objective: The primary aim of this study was to compare the motor performance of physically well-recovered men with traumatic brain injury with that of healthy men.
Design: Cross-sectional study in a national rehabilitation centre.
Methods: Static and dynamic balance, agility and rhythm co-ordination of men with traumatic brain injury (n=34) and healthy controls (n=36) were assessed. Between-group differences in dynamic balance and agility were analysed by analysis of covariance and differences in static balance and rhythm co-ordination by logistic regression analysis. Cut-off points for clinical screening were determined by receiver operating characteristics analyses.
Results: Men with traumatic brain injury had impaired balance and agility compared with healthy men and in a rhythm co-ordination test they had difficulties in starting and sustaining simultaneous rhythmical movements of hands and feet. In receiver operating characteristics analyses a running figure-of-eight test (agility), tandem walking forwards (dynamic balance) and rhythm co-ordination test with fast tempo were found the most sensitive and specific for distinguishing between men with traumatic brain injury and the healthy men.
Conclusions: The impairments in motor performance of physically well-recovered patients with traumatic brain injury were obvious. The results of this study extend the knowledge of problems in motor performance among patients with traumatic brain injury and provide further information for clinical rehabilitation.