Primary objective: To establish whether, following acquired brain injury, intensive post-acute neuropsychological rehabilitation could have long-term beneficial effects.
Methods and procedures: A group of 37 adults who had suffered cerebrovascular accidents or traumatic brain injuries and who had undergone a rehabilitation programme were followed up 12-22 years post-injury, together with a non-rehabilitated control group of 13 adults, matched for brain-injury and demographics characteristics. Both groups completed a set of questionnaires concerning broad aspects of psychological well-being. Significant others completed similar questionnaires.
Main outcomes and results: The rehabilitation group showed significantly lower levels of brain injury symptoms and higher levels of competency at follow-up. They also rated internal locus of control and general self-efficacy as significantly higher than the control group. Anxiety and depression levels were significantly lower and quality of life significantly higher in the rehabilitation group for both the subjects themselves and for their significant others.
Conclusions: Within methodological limitations this study suggests that post-acute neuropsychological rehabilitation can have long-term beneficial effects.