Research Reports - Effectiveness of Communication-specific Coping Intervention for adults with traumatic brain injury

Neuropsychol Rehabil. 2016 Dec 2:1-19. [Epub ahead of print]

Douglas JM(1,)(2), Knox L(1,)(2), De Maio C(1,)(3), Bridge H(1,)(4), Drummond
M(1,)(5,)(6), Whiteoak J(1,)(6,)(7).

People with traumatic brain injury (TBI) describe everyday interactions as a
long-term challenge frequently associated with ongoing stress.
Communication-specific Coping Intervention (CommCope-I) is a new treatment
developed to target coping in the context of communication breakdown. The
intervention incorporates principles of cognitive behavioural therapy,
self-coaching and context-sensitive social communication therapy. The purpose of
this study was to examine the effectiveness of CommCope-I in a group of adults
with severe TBI and ongoing functional communication difficulties. Participants
were 13 adults with severe TBI (GCS = 3-8; mean age = 35.2 years; mean time
post-injury = 7.6 years). The project involved three phases: (1)
Control/pre-intervention wait phase (multiple assessments), (2) Treatment (6
weeks), and (3) Follow-up (12 weeks). Repeated measures ANOVA with planned
pairwise comparisons were used to test the significance of change. Intervention
elicited statistically significant improvements in communication-specific coping,
functional communication and stress that were maintained for three months.
Improved use of communication-specific coping strategies was evident in clinician
blind ratings. Clients reported significant reduction in stress at the end of
treatment and one and three months later. This intervention provides a promising
means of improving communication-specific coping and reducing communication
dysfunction and its negative consequences for people with TBI. 

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