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Cognitive Reserve and Age Predict Cognitive Recovery after Traumatic Brain Injury

Researchers from Melbourne, Australia looked at cognitive reserve and age as factors to predict the cognitive recovery after a mild to severe traumatic brain injury. Recognizing that the persistence of injury-related cognitive impairments can have devastating consequences after traumatic brain injury, the researchers undertook a longitudinal study to examine the long-term cognitive recovery in 109 adults (71% male) experiencing complicated mild-to-severe traumatic brain injury in association with age, pre-mobid intelligence and injury severity (measured by post traumatic amnesia duration).

The subjects were tested at a mean of 43.73 days post traumatic brain injury and again at a mean of 3.70 years post injury. The adults were compared to a healthy control group of 63 adults (59% male) who completed the measures only once. The researchers found “at initial assessment, the TBI participants performed significantly worse on all measures compared with the healthy control group. Within the TBI group, shorter PTA deration, younger age and higher pre-morbid IQ were associated with better initial cognitive performance. Cognitive task performance improved significantly in the traumatic brain injury group at follow-ups between 2 to 5 years later but remained significantly below control group means. Notably, higher pre-morbid IQ and younger age were associated with greater cognitive recovery at follow-up, whereas PTA duration was not.”

The citation for the study is:

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About this Author

Bruce Stern, Stark Law Firm, Spinal Cord Injuries, Litigation Law Attorney

Bruce H. Stern is a Shareholder and member of the Accident & Personal Injury Group, where he concentrates his practice in the area of traumatic brain and spinal cord injuries and wrongful death. In July 2004, Mr. Stern began publishing Traumatic Brain Injury Law Blog as a way to share his knowledge in the field of brain injury law. Additionally, Mr. Stern is the author of numerous articles and a frequent lecturer on the subject of traumatic brain injury litigation, evidence and trial techniques. He also co-authored a book entitled "Litigating Brain Injuries"...