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Demonstration of functional rehabilitation treatment effects in children and young people after severe acquired brain injury

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Rob ForsythORCiD, Matt Ingram, George Kelly



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC-ND).


PURPOSE: To examine relationships between functional outcomes after paediatric acquired brain injury (ABI) and measures of rehabilitation dose. METHODS: An observational study of children receiving residential neurorehabilitation after severe ABI. RESULTS: Basic total rehabilitation dose shows a paradoxical inverse relationship to global outcome. This is due to confounding by both initial injury severity and length of stay, and variation in treatment content for a given total rehabilitation dose. Content-aware rehabilitation dose measures show robust positive correlations between fractions of rehabilitation treatment received and plausibly-related aspects of outcome: specifically, between rates of recovery of gross motor function and the fraction of rehabilitation effort directed to active practice and motor learning. This relationship was robust to adjustment for therapists’ expectations of recovery. CONCLUSION: Content-aware measures of rehabilitation dose are robustly causally related to pertinent aspects of outcome. These findings are step toward a goal of comparative effectiveness research in paediatric neurorehabilitation.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Forsyth R, Hamilton C, Ingram M, Kelly G, Grove T, Wales L, Gilthorpe MS

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Developmental Neurorehabilitation

Year: 2022

Volume: 25

Issue: 4

Pages: 239-245

Online publication date: 31/08/2021

Acceptance date: 02/08/2021

Date deposited: 02/08/2021

ISSN (print): 1751-8423

ISSN (electronic): 1751-8431

Publisher: Taylor & Francis


DOI: 10.1080/17518423.2021.1964631


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