Research Reports - The sooner patients begin neurorehabilitation, the better their functional outcome

Brain Inj. 2013 Jul 29

León-Carrión J, Machuca-Murga F, Solís-Marcos I, León-Domínguez U,
Domínguez-Morales MD

To determine whether early neurorehabilitation
improves a patient's functional recovery. Research design: A retrospective study
was carried out on patients with severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) who
underwent a minimum of 4 months of integral and multidisciplinary
neurorehabilitation. Methods and procedures: Fifty-eight patients with severe TBI
were assessed at admission and at discharge using the FIM + FAM scale. Two groups
were formed based on time elapsed from brain injury to onset of rehabilitation.
The early treatment group (ET) included patients who began rehabilitation within
the first 9 months post-trauma; the late treatment group (LT) began after the
9-month cut-off date. Intra- and between-group analysis of FIM + FAM scores were
carried out at admission and discharge. Multiple linear regression was used to
determine the best predictors for functional rehabilitation. Main outcomes and
results: After neurorehabilitation, all subjects showed significant improvement
in cognitive, motor, communication and psychosocial functioning. Moreover, the ET
group showed better global functional outcome at discharge than patients who
began later treatment. The best predictors for functional neurorehabilitation
were months since injury, age, GCS score and months of treatment. Conclusions: It
is concluded that the sooner patients begin neurorehabilitation, the better their
functional outcome.

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