alexa A systematic review of psychological interventions to alleviate cognitive and psychosocial problems in children with acquired brain injury.


Primary Healthcare: Open Access

Author(s): Ross KA, Dorris L, McMillan T

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Abstract AIM: It is now generally accepted that paediatric acquired brain injury (ABI) can have an impact on a child's cognitive, social, and behavioural functioning. However, the lack of guidelines on effective interventions for the affected children and their families, particularly beyond the acute recovery phase, can limit access to effective support. We provide a systematic review of the literature on the effectiveness of psychological interventions aimed at alleviating cognitive and psychosocial outcomes after paediatric ABI. METHOD: The search used the Ovid MEDLINE, Embase, Web of Knowledge, and EBSCO databases and hand searches of key journals. Nine studies met inclusion criteria: five intervention studies of cognitive outcome and four of psychosocial outcome. Effect sizes and methodological quality ratings were calculated using specific criteria. RESULTS: Only two of the nine studies were rated as high quality. There was limited evidence for effective interventions for cognitive outcomes (attention, memory, and learning difficulties). For psychosocial outcomes, there was evidence that interventions can alleviate internalizing symptoms. INTERPRETATION: Although there are some encouraging findings, there is a need for further, more rigorously designed, and better controlled research in this important area. We discuss how future research may consider issues such as age-appropriate interventions, the delivery format, and optimum post-injury timing of interventions, as well as multicentre collaborations. © The Authors. Developmental Medicine & Child Neurology © 2011 Mac Keith Press. This article was published in Dev Med Child Neurol and referenced in Primary Healthcare: Open Access

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