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Journal Article

Citation

Aguilar JM, Elleman CB, Cassedy AE, Mercuri Minich N, Zhang N, Owen Yeates K, Taylor HG, Wade SL. Disabil. Rehabil. 2019; ePub(ePub): ePub.

Affiliation

University of Cincinnati , College of Medicine , Cincinnati , OH , USA.

Copyright

(Copyright © 2019, Informa - Taylor and Francis Group)

DOI

10.1080/09638288.2019.1594397

PMID

30978116

Abstract

PURPOSE: To examine the long-term consequences of early childhood traumatic brain injury (TBI), approximately 6.8 years post-injury, on cognitive communication competency within a complex interplay of individual, contextual, and psychosocial factors. Additionally, we were interested in looking at the association of communication competence with social competence and overall functioning.

METHODS: 64 children with orthopedic injury, 40 children with moderate traumatic brain injury, and 14 children with severe traumatic brain injury who were between 3 years and 6 years 11 months at injury completed a narrative discourse task and clinical measures in a single visit at a longer term follow up in early adolescence, an average of 6.8 years post injury. Analyses of covariance were conducted to compare groups on the discourse task, and hierarchical linear regressions were conducted to examine the association of discourse measures with clinical measures of cognitive and psychosocial functioning.

RESULTS: Children with severe traumatic brain injury performed worse than children with moderate traumatic brain injury and orthopedic injury on all discourse indices and clinical measures. Injury severity, pragmatic skills, and socioeconomic status were associated with discourse gist. Discourse gist was the most sensitive measure of communication competence, and it was significantly associated with psychosocial outcomes independent of group.

CONCLUSION: Children who sustain a severe traumatic brain injury in early childhood are at risk for long-term cognitive communication impairments that may be related to a complex interplay of injury, individual, and social factors. Implications for rehabilitation The assessment and treatment of cognitive communication impairments after traumatic brain injury are complex and require consideration of individual, contextual, and psychosocial factors. Discourse, in general, and gist reasoning specifically, is a sensitive measure for detecting cognitive communication competence several years after pediatric traumatic brain injury. Treatments to address gist reasoning deficits may support improvements in global and social functioning.


Language: en

Keywords

Cognitive communication disorders; everyday functioning; gist reasoning; social competence

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