Depression, cognition, and functional correlates of recovery outcome after traumatic brain injury

Brain Inj. 1998 Jul;12(7):537-53. doi: 10.1080/026990598122313.


The present study investigated the prevalence and magnitude of depressive symptomatology in a sample of patients who had sustained traumatic brain injury (TBI) six months earlier. Depression was examined as a function of recovery outcome status, and its association with neuropsychological functioning, personal competency, and employability was also explored. Subjects were 100 patients who had previously sustained moderate-to-severe TBI who were enrolled as research subjects in the UCLA Brain Injury Research Center, and 30 matched control subjects who had sustained traumatic injuries other than to the head six months prior to evaluation. The results showed a significant association between depression and recovery status as measured by the Glasgow Outcome Scale (GOS). A significant majority of depressed subjects were found in the poorer GOS outcome groups (severe and moderate disability), compared to TBI subjects who had good GOS outcomes, and control subjects. This association was also reflected in the magnitude of the mean depression scores on two self-report measures of depression. However, no association was found between depression status and performance on the neuropsychological measures. Effects of depression were found only on an examiner-rated Patient Competency scale, and a metacognition measure based on self-report. These results are discussed in terms of brain injury severity, recovery status, and metacognition issues in TBI and other disorders.

MeSH terms

  • Activities of Daily Living
  • Adult
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Brain Injuries / epidemiology
  • Brain Injuries / psychology*
  • Brain Injuries / rehabilitation
  • California / epidemiology
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Cognition Disorders / epidemiology
  • Cognition Disorders / psychology*
  • Cognition Disorders / rehabilitation
  • Convalescence / psychology*
  • Depression / epidemiology*
  • Depression / etiology
  • Disabled Persons / psychology
  • Employment
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Linear Models
  • Male
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Prevalence
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Survivors / psychology