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Arch Clin Neuropsychol. 2002 May;17(4):319-34.

Patient complaints within 1 month of mild traumatic brain injury: a controlled study.

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  • 1Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital, 10230-111 Avenue, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.


Symptom complaints of 118 patients with mild traumatic brain injury (MTBI), within 1 month postinjury, were compared with those of 118 control participants without a MTBI. The MTBI and control subjects were group-matched on age, gender, socioeconomic status (SES), and education status. Differences in symptom endorsements and severity ratings were found between the groups, with 16 of the 43 queried symptoms endorsed significantly more often (Bonferroni-corrected P<.00116) by MTBI patients than by controls. A total of 23 of the 43 symptoms were endorsed at a significantly higher severity by MTBI patients. The MTBI sample showed significantly higher within-group variability, with severity ranging from minimal to high. Perhaps because of this high variability, a logistic regression used to discriminate MTBI patients from controls was only moderately successful. This indicates that subjective complaints probably cannot be used, even soon after injury, to decisively distinguish individual MTBI patients from uninjured persons.

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