Correlates of social problem solving during the first year after traumatic brain injury in children

Neuropsychology. 2008 May;22(3):357-70. doi: 10.1037/0894-4105.22.3.357.


Effects of pediatric traumatic brain injury (TBI) on social problem-solving were examined in a longitudinal study of 103 children with moderate-to-severe TBI (n = 52) or orthopedic injury (OI; n = 51) using the Interpersonal Negotiation Strategies task (INS). Children solved age-appropriate hypothetical social conflicts, with responses for four problem-solving steps scored by developmental level. The OI group performed better than the TBI group, but rate of change in performance over time did not differ between groups, suggesting improvement in children with TBI was not due to recovery from injury. Strong relations between INS performance and memory and language skills emerged, but emotional processing was only weakly related to INS performance. Frontal focal lesions influenced INS performance in younger (but not older) children with TBI. Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), revealed strong relationships between the INS and increased apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) measures indexing connectivity in the dorsolateral and cingulate regions in both TBI and OI groups, and in the temporal and parietal regions in the TBI group. These findings inform studies of social problem-solving skills during the first year post TBI. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2008 APA, all rights reserved).

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological
  • Adolescent
  • Brain Injuries / pathology
  • Brain Injuries / physiopathology*
  • Brain Injuries / psychology*
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Child
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Inhibition, Psychological
  • Intelligence
  • Language
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Memory / physiology
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Problem Solving / physiology*
  • Recovery of Function
  • Social Behavior*