Washington D.C.: People with mild to moderate brain injuries are two times more likely to have developed attention problems and those with severe injuries are five times more likely to develop secondary Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in an average of seven years after injury, reveals a study.
Researchers from Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center in the US presented the study at annual meeting of the Association of Academic Physiatrists in Las Vegas.
The findings indicated that parenting and home environment exert a powerful influence on recovery of these attention problems. Certain skills that can affect social functioning, such as speed of information processing, inhibition and reasoning, show greater long-term effects.
Children with severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) in optimal environments may show few effects of their injuries while children with milder injuries from disadvantaged or chaotic homes often demonstrate persistent problems.
Many children do very well in long-term after brain injury and most do not have across the board deficits. The team is working to identify genes important to recovery after TBI and understand how these genes may interact with environmental factors to influence recovery.
They will be collecting salivary DNA samples from more than 330 children participating in the Approaches and Decisions in Acute Pediatric TBI Trial.
They assessed children at three, six and 12 months post injury, and secondary outcomes will include a comprehensive assessment of cognitive and behavioural functioning at 12 months post injury.
The researchers investigated the structural connectivity of brain networks following aerobic training. After the recovery of structural connectivity, they discovered that aerobic training may lead to improvement in symptoms.
They developed an innovative web-based program that provides family-centered training in problem-solving, communication and self-regulation.
Across a series of randomised trials, online family problem-solving treatment has shown to reduce behaviour problems and executive dysfunction (management of cognitive processes) in older children with TBI, and over the longer-term improved everyday functioning in 12-17 year olds.
In a computerised pilot trial of attention and memory, children had improvements in sustained attention and parent-reported executive function behaviors. These intervention studies suggest several avenues for working to improve short- and long-term recovery following TBI.