Looking at long-term effects of TBI—an average of seven years after injury, patients 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 ADHD. These researchers are also finding that the family environment influences the development of these attention problems.
Over the past two decades, investigators at Cincinnati Children’s have conducted a series of studies to develop and test interventions to improve cognitive and behavioral outcomes. Online family problem-solving treatment has been shown to reduce behavior 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. Web-based parenting skills programs targeting younger children have resulted in improved parent-child interactions and reduced behavior problems, improvements in sustained attention, and parent-reported executive function behaviors.