Date of this Version
This study assesses the effects of severe traumatic brain injuries on family members and functioning-a topic of interest for those working with survivors and their families. This issue is receiving increased attention as recent findings suggest that family adjustment influences outcome for brain-injured persons. The Family Environment Scale and the Profile of Mood States were completed by 25 individuals who had a family member with a severe traumatic brain injury. These scales were also completed by a comparison group of 32 individuals who had no brain-injured family member. In terms of family functioning, the findings suggest that, when a family member suffers a severe traumatic brain injury, depression may be elevated, along with a decreased ability to express feelings, decreased time and energy for social and recreational activities, and increased control in comparison to families without a brain-injured member. While this might contribute to family isolation which could last for many years, the overall finding of the present study was that caregiver families were coping adequately.
This document has been peer reviewed.