One-year follow-up of mild traumatic brain injury: Cognition, disability and life satisfaction of patients seeking consultation
Britt-Marie Stålnacke, Eva Elgh and Peter Sojka
Objective: To investigate cognitive function, symptoms, disabilities and life satisfaction of patients with mild traumatic brain injury who accepted consultation one year post-trauma.
Design: Prospective study.
Patients: Sixty-nine patients (16 accepted the consultation offered, 53 declined).
Methods: At follow-up, the patients answered questionnaires about symptoms, disabilities (RHFUQ) and life satisfaction (LiSat-11). The patients who underwent consultation and their healthy control subjects were administered a neuropsychological evaluation.
Results: In the group undergoing consultation, the number of cognitive tests with outcomes below cut-off limits (–1.5 SD) was statistically significantly higher compared with a control group (21 tests in 11 patients vs 8 tests in 7 control subjects; p = 0.025). The number of patients with one or more disability was statistically significantly higher among patients with consultation than without (94% and 34%, respectively; p < 0.001). Total RHFUQ score was statistically significantly higher for the group with consultation than without (5.9 ± 3.7 and 1.1 ± 2.3, respectively, p < 0.001). The group with consultation exhibited a lower level of life satisfaction (41.5 ± 10.4 vs 45.8 ± 13.8 for the non-consulting group; p = 0.057).
Conclusion: The high frequency of occurrence of disabilities and lower cognitive functioning, together with the lower
level of life satisfaction, appear to characterize patients choosing consultation 1 year post-injury. This highlights the importance of offering consultation for persons suffering mild head injuries.
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