Preliminary efficacy of a Web-based family problem-solving treatment program for adolescents with traumatic brain injury

J Head Trauma Rehabil. Nov-Dec 2008;23(6):369-77. doi: 10.1097/01.HTR.0000341432.67251.48.


Objective: Preliminary report of the efficacy of a Web-based treatment program to improve adolescent and family psychosocial functioning following traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Participants: Families of 9 adolescents with TBI (2 severe and 7 moderate) injured less than 24 months ago participated in this study.

Intervention: A Web-based family treatment program designed to enhance family problem solving and adjustment, as well as reduce adolescent behavioral and social problems that are common sequelae of moderate-to-severe TBI was used as intervention. The program consisted of 10 core sessions and up to 4 supplemental sessions, each consisting of self-guided Web exercises followed by a videoconference therapy session.

Results: Significant improvements were found in parent-reported adolescent internalizing behaviors, self-reported adolescent depressive symptoms, parental depression, and parent-adolescent conflict. Effect sizes were in the medium-to-high range for these same contrasts. Exploratory analyses suggested that providing audio with the Web site may enhance some outcomes.

Conclusions: This study provides preliminary evidence of the feasibility and efficacy of family-centered online intervention for improving adolescent and family adaptation following pediatric TBI.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological
  • Adjustment Disorders / therapy*
  • Adolescent
  • Brain Injuries / psychology*
  • Child
  • Cohort Studies
  • Family / psychology
  • Family Therapy / methods*
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Internet*
  • Male
  • Problem Solving*
  • Videoconferencing*