The Phillips Report on traumatic brain injury (TBI) in Ireland found that injury was more frequent in men and that gender differences were present in childhood. This study determined when gender differences emerge and examined the effect of gender on the mechanism of injury, injury type and severity and outcome.
A national prospective, observational study was conducted over a 2-year period. All patients under 17 years of age referred to a neurosurgical service following TBI were included. Data on patient demographics, events surrounding injury, injury type and severity, patient management and outcome were collected from ‘on-call’ logbooks and neurosurgical admissions records.
342 patients were included. Falls were the leading cause of injury for both sexes. Boys’ injuries tended to involve greater energy transfer and involved more risk-prone behaviour resulting in a higher rate of other (non-brain) injury and a higher mortality rate. Intentional injury occurred only in boys. While injury severity was similar for boys and girls, significant gender differences in injury type were present; extradural haematomas were significantly higher in boys (p=0.014) and subdural haematomas were significantly higher in girls (p=0.011). Mortality was 1.8% for girls and 4.3% for boys.
Falls were responsible for most TBI, the home is the most common place of injury and non-operable TBI was common. These findings relate to all children. Significant gender differences exist from infancy. Boys sustained injuries associated with a greater energy transfer, were less likely to use protective devices and more likely to be injured deliberately. This results in a different pattern of injury, higher levels of associated injury and a higher mortality rate.
Trauma; paediatric injury; epidemiology; Trauma, head; accident prevention
We sought to determine the lifetime prevalence of traumatic brain injury and its association with current health conditions in a representative sample of homeless people in Toronto, Ontario.
We surveyed 601 men and 303 women at homeless shelters and meal programs in 2004–2005 (response rate 76%). We defined traumatic brain injury as any self-reported head injury that left the person dazed, confused, disoriented or unconscious. Injuries resulting in unconsciousness lasting 30 minutes or longer were defined as moderate or severe. We assessed mental health, alcohol and drug problems in the past 30 days using the Addiction Severity Index. Physical and mental health status was assessed using the SF-12 health survey. We examined associations between traumatic brain injury and health conditions.
The lifetime prevalence among homeless participants was 53% for any traumatic brain injury and 12% for moderate or severe traumatic brain injury. For 70% of respondents, their first traumatic brain injury occurred before the onset of homelessness. After adjustment for demographic characteristics and lifetime duration of homelessness, a history of moderate or severe traumatic brain injury was associated with significantly increased likelihood of seizures (odds ratio [OR] 3.2, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.8 to 5.6), mental health problems (OR 2.5, 95% CI 1.5 to 4.1), drug problems (OR 1.6, 95% CI 1.1 to 2.5), poorer physical health status (–8.3 points, 95% CI –11.1 to –5.5) and poorer mental health status (–6.0 points, 95% CI –8.3 to –3.7).
Prior traumatic brain injury is very common among homeless people and is associated with poorer health.
Although disaster causes distress, many disaster victims do not develop long-term psychopathology. Others report benefits after traumatic experiences (post-traumatic growth). The objective of this study was to examine demographic and hurricane-related predictors of resilience and post-traumatic growth.
222 pregnant southern Louisiana women were interviewed, and 292 postpartum women completed interviews at delivery and eight weeks later. Resilience was measured by scores lower than a non-affected population, using the Edinburgh Depression Scale and the Post-Traumatic Stress Checklist (PCL). Post-traumatic growth was measured by questions about perceived benefits of the storm. Women were asked about their experience of the hurricane, addressing danger, illness/injury, and damage. Chi-square tests and log-Poisson models were used to calculate associations and relative risks (RR) for demographics, hurricane experience, and mental health resilience and perceived benefit.
35% of pregnant and 34% of the postpartum women were resilient from depression, while 56% and 49% were resilient from post-traumatic stress disorder. Resilience was most likely among white women, older women, and women who had a partner. A greater experience of the storm, particularly injury/illness or danger, was associated with lower resilience. Experiencing damage due to the storm was associated with increased report of some perceived benefits.
Many pregnant and postpartum women are resilient from the mental health consequences of disaster, and perceive benefits after a traumatic experience. Certain aspects of experiencing disaster reduce resilience, but may increase perceived benefit.
resilience; depression; postpartum; pregnancy; disaster; post-traumatic stress disorder
Traumatic brain injury is usually assessed with the Glasgow coma scale (GCS), CT, or MRI. After such injury, the injured brain tissue is characterised by calcium mediated neuronal damage and inflammation. Positron emission tomography with the isotope cobalt-55 (Co-PET) as a calcium tracer enables imaging of affected tissue in traumatic brain injury. The aim was to determine whether additional information can be gained by Co-PET in the diagnosis of moderate traumatic brain injury and to assess any prognostic value of Co-PET. Five patients with recent moderately severe traumatic brain injury were studied. CT was performed on the day of admission, EEG within one week, and MRI and Co-PET within four weeks of injury. Clinical assessment included neurological examination, GCS, neuropsychological testing, and Glasgow outcome scale (GOS) after one year. Co-PET showed focal uptake that extended beyond the morphological abnormalities shown by MRI and CT, in brain regions that were actually diagnosed with EEG. Thus Co-PET is potentially useful for diagnostic localisation of both structural and functional abnormalities in moderate traumatic brain injury.
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) has substantial negative implications for the post-deployment adjustment of Veterans who served in Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) and Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF); however, most research on Veterans has focused on males. This study investigated gender differences in psychiatric diagnoses and neurobehavioral symptom severity among OEF/OIF Veterans with deployment-related TBI.
This population-based study examined psychiatric diagnoses and self-reported neurobehavioral symptom severity from administrative records for 12,605 United States OEF/OIF Veterans evaluated as having deployment-related TBI. Men (n = 11,951) and women (n = 654) who were evaluated to have deployment-related TBI during a standardized comprehensive TBI evaluation in Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) facilities were compared on the presence of psychiatric diagnoses and severity of neurobehavioral symptoms.
Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) was the most common psychiatric condition for both genders, although women were less likely than men to have a PTSD diagnosis. In contrast, relative to men, women were 2 times more likely to have a depression diagnosis, 1.3 times more likely to have a non-PTSD anxiety disorder, and 1.5 times more likely to have PTSD with comorbid depression. Multivariate analyses indicated that blast exposure during deployment may account for some of these differences. Additionally, women reported significantly more severe symptoms across a range of neurobehavioral domains.
Although PTSD was the most common condition for both men and women, it is also critical for providers to identify and treat other conditions, especially depression and neurobehavioral symptoms, among women Veterans with deployment-related TBI.
traumatic brain injury; Veterans; women; gender; psychiatric conditions; neurobehavioral symptoms; post-deployment adjustment
This study examined the use of diffusion tensor imaging in detecting white matter changes in the frontal lobes following pediatric traumatic brain injury. Forty-six children (ages 8-16 years) with moderate-to-severe traumatic brain injury and 47 with orthopedic injury, underwent 1.5 Tesla magnetic resonance imaging at three months post-injury. Conventional magnetic resonance imaging studies were obtained along with diffusion tensor imaging. Diffusion tensor imaging metrics including fractional anisotropy, apparent diffusion coefficient, and radial diffusivity were compared between the groups. Significant group differences were identified, implicating frontal white matter alterations in the injury group that were predictive of later Glasgow Outcome Scale ratings; however, focal lesions were not related to the Glasgow Outcome Scale ratings. Injury severity was also significantly associated with diffusion tensor imaging metrics. Diffusion tensor imaging holds great promise as an index of white matter integrity in traumatic brain injury and as a potential biomarker reflective of outcome.
Pediatric; Frontal Lobe; Traumatic Brain Injury; Diffusion Tensor Imaging; Outcome
We examined whether mild traumatic brain injuries in children and adolescents, especially when associated with acute clinical features reflecting more severe injury, result in different postinjury trajectories of postconcussive symptoms compared with mild orthopedic injuries.
PARTICIPANTS AND METHODS
Participants in this prospective and longitudinal cohort study were 8- to 15-year-old children, 186 with mild traumatic brain injuries and 99 with mild orthopedic injuries, who were recruited from consecutive admissions to emergency departments in 2 large children’s hospitals. Parents rated current postconcussive symptoms within 3 weeks of injury and at 1, 3, and 12 months after injury. At the initial assessment, parents also provided retrospective ratings of preinjury symptoms, and children with mild traumatic brain injuries received MRI of the brain. Clinical features examined as predictors of postconcussive symptoms included loss of consciousness, Glasgow Coma Scale score below 15, other injuries, acute symptoms of concussion, and intracranial abnormalities on the MRI.
Finite mixture modeling identified 4 longitudinal trajectories of postconcussive symptoms (ie, no postconcussive symptoms, moderate persistent postconcussive symptoms, high acute/resolved postconcussive symptoms, high acute/persistent postconcussive symptoms). The mild traumatic brain injuries and orthopedic injuries groups demonstrated a different distribution of trajectories. Children with mild traumatic brain injuries were more likely than those with orthopedic injuries to demonstrate high acute/resolved and high acute/persistent trajectories relative to the no postconcussive symptoms group. The 2 trajectories with high acute levels of postconcussive symptoms were especially likely among children with mild traumatic brain injuries whose acute clinical presentation reflected more severe injury.
Mild traumatic brain injuries, particularly those that are more severe, are more likely than orthopedic injuries to result in transient or persistent increases in postconcussive symptoms in the first year after injury. Additional research is needed to elucidate the range of factors, both injury related and non–injury related, that place some children with mild traumatic brain injuries at risk for postconcussive symptoms.
mild traumatic brain injury; postconcussive symptoms; clinical predictors
Objective The behavioral ratings of preschoolers who sustained traumatic brain injury (TBI) prior to the age of 2 years and a typically developing group were compared; predictors of behavioral functioning were examined. Methods Eighty-two 3-year-olds comprised mild TBI (n = 31), moderate/severe TBI (n = 20), and typically developing (n = 31) groups, with Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL) as the primary outcome measure. Results Groups differed on the CBCL Withdrawal Scale. No differences emerged in the proportion of children demonstrating clinical elevations, with average mean scores for each group. Exploratory analyses yielded no differences between inflicted, non-inflicted, and typical groups. Glasgow Coma Scale and Self-Report Family Inventory Leadership predicted Externalizing Problems; developmental level predicted Internalizing Problems. Conclusions After early TBI, preschoolers did not differ from one another or a matched comparison group in behavioral ratings; however, it may be premature to infer that preschoolers do not evidence behavioral dysfunction after early TBI.
Behavioral ratings post traumatic brain injury; preschool traumatic brain injury; traumatic brain injury
To describe the relationships between secondary health conditions and health preference in a cohort of adults with chronic spinal cord injury (SCI).
Cross-sectional telephone survey.
Community-dwelling adult men and women (N = 357) with chronic traumatic and non-traumatic SCI (C1-L3 AIS A-D) who were at least 1 year post-injury/onset.
Health Utilities Index-Mark III (HUI-Mark III) and SCI Secondary Conditions Scale-Modified (SCS-M).
SCS-M responses for different secondary health conditions were used to create “low impact = absent/mild” and “high impact = moderate/significant” secondary health condition groups. Analysis of covariance was used to examine differences in HUI-Mark III scores for different secondary health conditions while controlling for impairment. The mean HUI-Mark III was 0.24 (0.27, range, −0.28 to 1.00). HUI-Mark III scores were lower (P < 0.001) in high impact groups for spasms, bladder and bowel dysfunction, urinary tract infections, autonomic dysreflexia, circulatory problems, respiratory problems, chronic pain, joint pain, psychological distress, and depression compared with the low impact groups. As well, HUI-Mark III scores were lower (P < 0.05) in high impact groups for pressure sores, unintentional injuries, contractures, heterotopic bone ossification, sexual dysfunction, postural hypotension, cardiac problems, and neurological deterioration than low-impact groups.
High-impact secondary health conditions are negatively associated with health preference in persons with SCI. Although further work is required, the HUI-Mark III data may be a useful tool for calculating quality-adjusted life years, and advocating for additional resources where secondary health conditions have substantial adverse impact on health.
Health status; Outcomes assessment (health care); Quality of life; Spinal cord injuries; Tetraplegia; Paraplegia; Utility theory
Objective: To examine the relationship between environmental enrichment (EE) and hippocampal atrophy in the chronic stages of moderate to severe traumatic brain injury (TBI).
Design: Retrospective analysis of prospectively collected data; observational, within-subjects.
Participants: Patients (N = 25) with moderate to severe TBI.
Measures: Primary predictors: (1) An aggregate of self-report rating of EE (comprising hours of cognitive, physical, and social activities) at 5 months post-injury; (2) pre-injury years of education as a proxy for pre-morbid EE (or cognitive reserve). Primary outcome: bilateral hippocampal volume change from 5 to 28 months post-injury.
Results: As predicted, self-reported EE was significantly negatively correlated with bilateral hippocampal atrophy (p < 0.05), with greater EE associated with less atrophy from 5 to 28 months. Contrary to prediction, years of education (a proxy for cognitive reserve) was not significantly associated with atrophy.
Conclusion: Post-injury EE may serve as a buffer against hippocampal atrophy in the chronic stages of moderate-severe TBI. Clinical application of EE should be considered for optimal maintenance of neurological functioning in the chronic stages of moderate-severe TBI.
traumatic brain injury; environmental enrichment; subacute atrophy; adult; moderate to severe
Traumatic brain injury is a global health concern and is the leading cause of traumatic morbidity and mortality in children. Despite a lower overall mortality than in adult traumatic brain injury, the cost to society from the sequelae of pediatric traumatic brain injury is very high. Predictors of poor outcome after traumatic brain injury include altered systemic and cerebral physiology, including altered cerebral hemodynamics. Cerebral autoregulation is often impaired following traumatic brain injury and may adversely impact poor outcome. Although altered cerebrovascular hemodynamics early after traumatic brain injury may contribute to disability in children, there is a paucity of information regarding changes in cerebral blood flow and cerebral autoregulation after pediatric traumatic brain injury. In this article, we discuss normal pediatric cerebral physiology and cerebrovascular pathophysiology following pediatric traumatic brain injury.
Traumatic or serious brain injury (BI) has persistent and well documented adverse outcomes, yet 'mild' or 'moderate' BI, which often does not result in hospital treatment, accounts for half the total days of disability attributed to BI. There are currently few data available from community samples on the incidence and correlates of these injuries. Therefore, the study aimed to assess the 1) incidence of self-reported mild (not requiring hospital admission) and moderate (admitted to hospital)) brain injury (BI), 2) causes of injury 3) physical health scores and 4) relationship between BI and problematic alcohol or marijuana use.
An Australian community sequential-cohort study (cohorts aged 20-24, 40-44 and 60-64 years at wave one) used a survey methodology to assess BI and substance use at baseline and four years later.
Of the 7485 wave one participants, 89.7% were re-interviewed at wave two. There were 56 mild (230.8/100000 person-years) and 44 moderate BI (180.5/100000 person-years) reported between waves one and two. Males and those in the 20-24 year cohort had increased risk of BI. Sports injury was the most frequent cause of BI (40/100) with traffic accidents being a greater proportion of moderate (27%) than mild (7%) BI. Neither alcohol nor marijuana problems at wave one were predictors of BI. BI was not a predictor of developing substance use problems by wave two.
BI were prevalent in this community sample, though the incidence declined with age. Factors associated with BI in community samples differ from those reported in clinical samples (e.g. typically traumatic brain injury with traffic accidents the predominate cause). Further, detailed evaluation of the health consequences of these injuries is warranted.
The present study examined how different types of social support differentially moderated the relationship between trauma history characteristics and the development of posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms (PTSS) following a motor vehicle accident (MVA). Two hundred thirty-five MVA victims self-reported levels of social support and trauma history, and were evaluated for PTSS 6- and 12-months post-MVA. Results indicated that after controlling for gender, injury severity and income, number of prior trauma types and subjective responses to prior traumatization predicted subsequent PTSS (ps < .05). Appraisal social support was a significant moderator of the total number of types of trauma (appraisal: 6-months β = −.16, p < .05; 12-months β = −.17, p < .05) and subjective physical injury during the prior trauma (appraisal: 6-months β = −.14, p < .05; 12-months β = −.19, p < .05) in predicting PTSS. Results underscore the importance of examining both trauma history and social support as multi-dimensional constructs and suggest merit to addressing social support in trauma victims with a prior trauma history.
posttraumatic stress disorder; trauma history; social support; appraisal; motor vehicle accident; moderation
Few large-scale, multisite investigations have assessed the development of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms and health outcomes across the spectrum of patients with mild, moderate, and severe traumatic brain injury (TBI).
To understand the risk of developing PTSD symptoms and to assess the impact of PTSD on the development of health and cognitive impairments across the full spectrum of TBI severity.
Multisite US prospective cohort study.
Eighteen level I trauma centers and 51 non–trauma center hospitals.
A total of 3047 (weighted n=10 372) survivors of multiple traumatic injuries between the ages of 18 and 84 years.
Main Outcome Measures
Severity of TBI was categorized from chart-abstracted International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clinical Modification codes. Symptoms consistent with a DSM-IV diagnosis of PTSD were assessed with the PTSD Checklist 12 months after injury. Self-reported outcome assessment included the 8 Medical Outcomes Study 36-Item Short Form Health Survey health status domains and a 4-item assessment of cognitive function at telephone interviews 3 and 12 months after injury.
At the time of injury hospitalization, 20.5% of patients had severe TBI, 11.7% moderate TBI, 12.9% mild TBI, and 54.9% no TBI. Patients with severe (relative risk, 0.72; 95% confidence interval, 0.58-0.90) and moderate (0.63; 0.44-0.89) TBI, but not mild TBI (0.83; 0.61-1.13), demonstrated a significantly diminished risk of PTSD symptoms relative to patients without TBI. Across TBI categories, in adjusted analyses patients with PTSD demonstrated an increased risk of health status and cognitive impairments when compared with patients without PTSD.
More severe TBI was associated with a diminished risk of PTSD. Regardless of TBI severity, injured patients with PTSD demonstrated the greatest impairments in self-reported health and cognitive function. Treatment programs for patients with the full spectrum of TBI severity should integrate intervention approaches targeting PTSD.
Traumatic brain injury is one of the most common causes harmful to the health of society. Several studies have been conducted on the treatment of traumatic brain injury. The protective effects of statins on neurons have been demonstrated in numerous studies. The objective of the present study is to examine the effect of simvastatin on the short-term and long-term results of consciousness in patients with brain trauma.
66 patients with traumatic brain injury with GCS in the range of 9 to 12 were enrolled. The patients were randomly assigned to the treatment with simvastatin and placebo groups. The patients were evaluated according to GCS criteria at admission, discharge and 10 days after discharge as well as GOS criteria, one month, 3 months and 6 months after discharge.
No significant difference was observed between two groups, regarding the mechanism of injury, type and location of the lesion and complications. The comparison of the average temperatures showed that, the average temperature of patients treated with simvastatin was significantly lower. There was no significant difference between GCS and GOS of the two groups at all times. The comparison of GCS difference between the first and tenth days showed that the increase of GCS was higher in the group treated with simvastatin.
The effects of statins on intracerebral hemorrhage have been confirmed, but few studies have been conducted on brain trauma. The present study revealed that though simvastatin caused no significant difference in GCS and GOS, but it had no harmful effects as well. It is recommended to conduct a study with a larger sample size and isolated groups.
Simvastatin, Patients, Traumatic brain injury
Previous studies have documented weaknesses in cognitive ability and early academic readiness in young children with traumatic brain injury (TBI). However, few of these studies have rigorously controlled for demographic characteristics, examined the effects of TBI severity on a wide range of skills, or explored moderating influences of environmental factors on outcomes. To meet these objectives, each of three groups of children with TBI (20 with severe, 64 with moderate, and 15 with mild) were compared with a group of 117 children with orthopedic injuries (OI group). The children were hospitalized for their injuries between 3 and 6 years of age and were assessed an average of 1½ months post injury. Analysis revealed generalized weaknesses in cognitive and school readiness skills in the severe TBI group and suggested less pervasive effects of moderate and mild TBI. Indices of TBI severity predicted outcomes within the TBI sample and environmental factors moderated the effects of TBI on some measures. The findings document adverse effects of TBI in early childhood on post-acute cognitive and school readiness skills and indicate that residual deficits are related to both injury severity and the family environment.
The aim of this study was to explore youth reports of traumatic events by 1) identifying the types of events that children and adolescents report as traumatic in their lives, 2) investigating the association between self reported traumatic events and self and parent reported emotional problems and 3) by examining developmental differences in the types and severity of the events reported as traumatic. Information regarding traumas and symptoms was collected from a sample of youth aged 6–17 using The Child PTSD Checklist. A coding system was developed for classifying the events reported. Findings suggest that youth reported a wide variety of experiences as traumatic that could be reliably coded and classified, and that youth reporting traumatic events and symptoms consistent with PTSD evidence higher levels of emotional, and behavioral problems (via parent and child report) than youth not reporting traumatic events. Youth aged 13–17 tended to report traumas that were rated by independent coders as more severe than youth aged 6–12. While the types of events reported did not differ in PTSD symptoms and other emotional, and behavioral problems there were differences in objective ratings of physical severity and psychological intensity. Implications of the findings are discussed in terms of the creation of developmentally informed classification of traumatic stressors.
This study examined the prevalence of self-reported depressive symptoms and the self reported somatic depressive symptoms as measured by the Beck Depression Inventory-II (BDI-II) among patients hospitalized for acute coronary syndrome (ACS), and explored the impact of gender on both. A convenience sample of 789 adults (248 women and 541 men) was recruited for the study during hospital admission for ACS and participants were screened for self-reported depressive symptoms. BDI-II scores of ≥14 indicate a moderate level of depressive symptoms and this cut-off score was used to categorize patients into depressed and non-depressed groups. Pearson chi-square tests for independence (categorical variables) and t tests for independent samples (continuous variables) were used for gender comparisons. Results showed that depressive symptoms during ACS episodes were different between women and men. Women reported greater overall depressive symptoms (BDI-II mean = 11.89, S.D. = 9.68) than men (BDI-II mean = 9.00, S.D. = 7.93) (P < 0.000). Significantly more women (7.66%) were identified positive for somatic depressive symptoms (sleep and appetite disturbances and fatigue) than men (2.22%) (P = 0.0003). Findings support that there are gender differences in depressive symptoms experienced by patients hospitalized for ACS. Somatic symptoms of depression may be important indicators of depression especially among female ACS patients.
Traumatic brain injury in elderly patients is a neglected global disease burden. The main cause is fall, followed by motor vehicle accidents. This review article summarizes different aspects of geriatric traumatic brain injury, including epidemiology, pathology, and effects of comorbidities and pre-injury medications such as antiplatelets and anticoagulants. Functional outcome with or without surgical intervention, cognitive outcome, and psychiatric complications are discussed. Animal models are also reviewed in attempt to explain the relationship of aging and outcome, together with advances in stem cell research. Though elderly people in general did fare worse after traumatic brain injury, certain “younger elderly” people, aged 65–75 years, could have a comparable outcome to younger adults after minor to moderate head injury.
Traumatic brain injury; Elderly; Geriatric; Aging; Review; Animal studies; Stem cell; Drugs; Anticoagulation; Antiplatelet; Warfarin; Aspirin; Clopidogrel; Epidemiology; Outcome; Cognitive; Craniotomy; Decompressive craniectomy
This study sought to determine whether the family environment moderates psychosocial outcomes after traumatic brain injury (TBI) in young children.
Participants were recruited prospectively from consecutive hospital admissions of 3-6 year old children, and included 19 with severe TBI, 56 with complicated mild/moderate TBI, and 99 with orthopedic injuries (OI). They completed four assessments across the first 18 months post-injury. The initial assessment included measures of parenting style, family functioning, and the quality of the home. Children’s behavioral adjustment, adaptive functioning, and social competence were assessed at each occasion. Mixed model analyses examined the relationship of the family environment to psychosocial outcomes across time.
The OI and TBI groups differed significantly in social competence, but the family environment did not moderate the group difference, which was of medium magnitude. In contrast, group differences in behavioral adjustment became more pronounced across time at high levels of authoritarian and permissive parenting; among children with severe TBI, however, even those with low levels of permissive parenting showed increases in behavioral problems. For adaptive functioning, better home environments provided some protection following TBI, but not over time for the severe TBI group. These three-way interactions of group, family environment, and time post injury were all of medium magnitude.
The findings indicate that the family environment moderates the psychosocial outcomes of TBI in young children, but the moderating influence may wane with time among children with severe TBI.
parenting; home; behavior; social competence; adaptive functioning
Objective To determine if baseline functional health status, as measured by SF-36 (veterans), predicts new onset symptoms or diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder among deployed US military personnel with combat exposure.
Design Prospective cohort analysis.
Setting Millennium Cohort.
Participants Combat deployed members who completed baseline (2001-3) and follow-up (2004-6) questionnaires. Self reported and electronic data used to examine the relation between functional health and post-traumatic stress disorder.
Main outcome measures New onset post-traumatic stress disorder as measured by either meeting the DSM-IV criteria with the 17 item post-traumatic stress disorder checklist-civilian version or self report of a physician diagnosis at follow-up with the absence of both at baseline.
Results Of the 5410 eligible participants, 395 (7.3%) had new onset symptoms or diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder at the time of follow-up. Individuals whose baseline mental or physical component summary scores were below the 15th centile had two to three times the risk of symptoms or a diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder by follow-up compared with those in the 15th to 85th centile. Of those with new onset symptoms or diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder, over half (58%) of cases occurred among participants with scores below the 15th centile at baseline.
Conclusions Low mental or physical health status before combat exposure significantly increases the risk of symptoms or diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder after deployment. More vulnerable members of a population could be identified and benefit from interventions targeted to prevent new onset post-traumatic stress disorder.
From 1990 through 1992 we conducted surveillance of cases requiring hospital admission and of fatal cases of traumatic brain injury among residents of Utah and found an annual incidence rate of 108.8 per 100,000 population. The greatest number of injuries occurred among men and persons aged 15 to 24 years. Motor vehicles were the leading cause of injury, followed by falls and assaults. The incidence rate we found is substantially lower than previously published rates of traumatic brain injury. This may be the result of a decrease in the incidence of these injuries in the decade since earlier studies were done, as well as changing hospital admission criteria that serve to exclude less severe cases of injury. Despite the apparent decline in rates, our findings indicate the continued importance of traumatic brain injury as a public health problem and the need to develop more effective prevention strategies that will address the major causes of these injuries.
We examined memory self-awareness and memory self-monitoring abilities during inpatient rehabilitation in participants with moderate to severe traumatic brain injury (TBI). Twenty-nine participants with moderate to severe TBI and 29 controls matched on age, gender, and education completed a performance prediction paradigm. To assess memory self-awareness, participants predicted the amount of information they would remember before completing list-learning and visual-spatial memory tasks. Memory self-monitoring was assessed by participants' ability to increase accuracy of their predictions after experience with the tests. Although the TBI participants performed more poorly than controls on both episodic memory tasks, no significant group differences emerged in memory self-awareness or memory self-monitoring. The TBI participants predicted that their memory performances would be poorer than that of controls, accurately adjusted their predictions in accordance with the demands of the tasks, and successfully modified their predictions following experience with the tasks. The results indicate that moderate to severe TBI individuals in the early stages of recovery can competently assess the demands of externally-driven metamemorial situations and utilize experience with task to accurately update their knowledge of memory abilities.
traumatic brain injury; memory awareness; memory monitoring; metamemory; metacognition
Background: Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) studies have shown diffuse cerebral atrophy following traumatic brain injury. In the past, quantitative volumetric analysis of these changes was carried out by manually tracing specific regions of interest. In contrast, voxel based morphometry (VBM) is a fully automated technique that allows examination of the whole brain on a voxel by voxel basis.
Objective: To use VBM to evaluate changes in grey matter concentration following traumatic brain injury.
Methods: Nine patients with a history of traumatic brain injury (ranging from mild to severe) about one year previously were compared with nine age and sex matched healthy volunteers. T1 weighted three dimensional MRI images were acquired and then analysed with statistical parametric mapping software (SPM2). The patients with traumatic brain injury also completed cognitive testing to determine whether regional grey matter concentration correlated with a measure of attention and initial injury severity.
Results: Compared with controls, the brain injured patients had decreased grey matter concentration in multiple brain regions including frontal and temporal cortices, cingulate gyrus, subcortical grey matter, and the cerebellum. Decreased grey matter concentration correlated with lower scores on tests of attention and lower Glasgow coma scale scores.
Conclusions: Using VBM, regions of decreased grey matter concentration were observed in subjects with traumatic brain injury compared with well matched controls. In the brain injured patients, there was a relation between grey matter concentration and attentional ability.
Anesthesiologists are frequently confronted with patients who are at risk for neurological complications due to perioperative stroke or prior traumatic brain injury. In this review, we address the growing and fascinating body of data that suggests gender and sex steroids influence the pathophysiology of injury and outcome for these patients. Cerebral ischemia, traumatic brain injury, and epilepsy are reviewed in the context of potential sex differences in mechanisms and outcomes of brain injury and the role of estrogen, progesterone, and androgens in shaping these processes. Lastly, implications for current and future perioperative and intensive care are identified.