Recovery and rehabilitation following traumatic brain injury

Brain Inj. 1997 May;11(5):305-18. doi: 10.1080/026990597123467.


Although most patients are discharged following traumatic brain injury (TBI) with "good recovery', recent reports indicate that many have persistent neuropsychological deficits. The purposes of this study were to: (1) determine if functional, neuropsychological and social outcome at 3 and 6 months in patients hospitalized following TBI could be ascertained via telephone follow-up, and (2) assess use of rehabilitation services in this population. Patients were identified through acute hospital admissions. A trained nurse practitioner abstracted data from acute charts. Using the Functional Independence Measure (FIM), Neurobehavioral Rating Scale (NRS), Telephone Interview for Cognitive Status (TICS), and a social questionnaire she obtained follow-up information at 3 and 6 months post-injury. Of 74 patients initially identified, 51 and 48 were available at 3 and 6 months, respectively. Most experienced mild to moderate TBI. Physical disability was minimal at follow-up as indicated by the FIM. Approximately half of the patients were rated cognitively impaired on the TICS at 3 months and over one-third remained impaired at 6 months. At 6 months 60.5% remained unemployed. Only eight of the 67 discharged survivors received any rehabilitation services. A brief telephone follow-up appears to be a cost-effective way to ascertain functional and neuropsychological outcome in TBI survivors. Since few of these patients received rehabilitation, a telephone follow-up may identify those who would potentially benefit from additional rehabilitation services.

MeSH terms

  • Activities of Daily Living / classification
  • Activities of Daily Living / psychology
  • Adult
  • Brain Damage, Chronic / diagnosis
  • Brain Damage, Chronic / psychology
  • Brain Damage, Chronic / rehabilitation*
  • Brain Injuries / diagnosis
  • Brain Injuries / psychology
  • Brain Injuries / rehabilitation*
  • Cohort Studies
  • Disability Evaluation
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Glasgow Coma Scale
  • Humans
  • Length of Stay
  • Male
  • Multiple Trauma / diagnosis
  • Multiple Trauma / psychology
  • Multiple Trauma / rehabilitation
  • Neuropsychological Tests*
  • Rehabilitation, Vocational / psychology
  • Social Adjustment*
  • Telephone
  • Treatment Outcome