Research Reports - Cognitive recovery and development after traumatic brain injury in childhood

J Neurotrauma. 2012 Oct 1

Aaro Jonsson C, Catroppa C, Godfrey C, Smedler AC, Anderson V

Influence of childhood traumatic brain injury on cognitive recovery and
subsequent development is poorly understood. In this longitudinal study we used
cluster-analysis to explore acute stage individual profiles of injury-age and
cognition in 118 children with traumatic brain injury. Repeated measures of
cognitive function were conducted at 30 months, indicating recovery, and 10 years
post-injury, indicating development. Nine clusters were identified. Recovery was
evident in 3 clusters, two of them with low functioning profiles. Developmental
gains occurred for 3 clusters and an acute profile of higher FFD and lower PS was
related to positive differences. One cluster, average low functioning and
especially low verbal comprehension, demonstrated a slower development compared
to peers. This suggests that developmental change after TBI in childhood takes
place on a continuum, with both chance of long-term catching up, and risk of poor
development. An acute profile of higher FFD and lower PS seemed to reflect injury
consequences and were followed by developmental gains. These results challenge
previous findings and warrant further investigation.

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