Research Reports - Mild traumatic brain injury after motor vehicle collisions

Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2014 Mar;95(3 Suppl)

Hartvigsen J(1), Boyle E(2), Cassidy JD(3), Carroll LJ(4)

OBJECTIVE: To describe the 1-year course of symptoms following mild traumatic
brain injury (MTBI) sustained in a motor vehicle collision as well as patterns of
DESIGN: One-year follow-up of a population-based inception cohort.
SETTING: The province of Saskatchewan, Canada, with a population of about
1,000,000 inhabitants.
PARTICIPANTS: Persons (N=1716) sustaining an MTBI during a car collision between
November 1997 and December 1999.
INTERVENTIONS: Not applicable.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: We report the prevalence of sleep disturbances, tiredness,
dizziness, forgetfulness, vision problems, hearing problems, headache, neck pain,
mid back pain, and low back pain at 6 weeks and 3, 6, 9, and 12 months
postcollision. At the same time points, we report self-reported care-seeking from
registered health care professionals.
RESULTS: A total of 1716 adults suffered MTBI after a motor vehicle collision
over the 2-year inception period. Six weeks after the collision, 75% reported
having more than 3 symptoms and 30% had clinically significant pain in more than
3 body sites. Over time, the prevalence of symptoms and pain decreased but they
were still common after 1 year. Almost all participants sought care for their
symptoms at all time points, most commonly from a physician. Care-seeking from
physiotherapists, chiropractors, and massage therapists was also very common, and
most participants sought care from 2 or 3 providers at all follow-up points.
CONCLUSIONS: Up to 1 year after sustaining an MTBI during a motor vehicle
collision, multiple symptoms and pain in several anatomical sites are common.
Care-seeking from multiple providers continues throughout the first year

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