Prior history of traumatic brain injury among persons in the Traumatic Brain Injury Model Systems National Database

John D. Corrigan, Jennifer Bogner, Dave Mellick, Tamara Bushnik, Kristen Dams-O'Connor, Flora M. Hammond, Tessa Hart, Stephanie Kolakowsky-Hayner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


Objective To determine the association between demographic, psychosocial, and injury-related characteristics and traumatic brain injury (TBI) occurring prior to a moderate or severe TBI requiring rehabilitation. Design Secondary data analysis. Setting TBI Model System inpatient rehabilitation facilities. Participants Persons (N=4464) 1, 2, 5, 10, 15, or 20 years after TBI resulting in participation in the TBI Model System National Database. Interventions Not applicable. Main Outcome Measures History of TBI prior to the TBI Model System Index injury, pre-Index injury demographic and behavioral characteristics, Index injury characteristics, post-Index injury behavioral health and global outcome. Results Twenty percent of the cohort experienced TBIs preceding the TBI Model System Index injury - 80% of these were mild and 40% occurred before age 16. Pre- and post-Index injury behavioral issues, especially substance abuse, were highly associated with having had a prior TBI. Greater severity of the pre-Index injury as well as occurrence before age 6 often showed stronger associations. Unexpectedly, pre-Index TBI was associated with less severe Index injuries and better functioning on admission and discharge from rehabilitation. Conclusions Findings suggest that earlier life TBI may have important implications for rehabilitation after subsequent TBI, especially for anticipating behavioral health issues in the chronic stage of recovery. Results provide additional evidence for the potential consequences of early life TBI, even if mild.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1940-1950
Number of pages11
JournalArchives of physical medicine and rehabilitation
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2013


  • Anxiety
  • Brain injuries
  • Craniocerebral trauma
  • Depression
  • Rehabilitation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rehabilitation
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation

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