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2022 Oct 08

J Neuropsychol

Predictive validity of the Westmead Post-Traumatic Amnesia Scale for functional outcomes in school-aged children who sustained traumatic brain injury.


The Westmead Post-Traumatic Amnesia Scale (WPTAS) is routinely used for the assessment of post-traumatic amnesia (PTA) in children who sustained traumatic brain injury (TBI). Yet, the WPTAS' predictive validity for functional outcomes is largely unknown. We aimed to determine whether PTA duration measured by the WPTAS (i) differentially predicts functional outcomes and (ii) contributes to predictions of outcomes beyond the Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) in children who sustained TBI. Participants were children and adolescents with moderate-to-severe TBI (n = 55) aged 8-15 years. PTA duration was assessed with the WPTAS. Outcomes at the first outpatient follow-up were scored on the Kings Outcome Scale for Childhood Head Injury (KOSCHI) and the TBI Outcome Domain Scale-Extended (ODS-E). Longer PTA and lower GCS were both significantly correlated with worse (i) global outcomes: presence of disability on the KOSCHI and lower score on the ODS-E and (ii) select specific outcomes on the ODS-E: mobility, mood and cognition. PTA duration predicted cognitive outcome on the ODS-E independently, beyond GCS. Together, PTA duration and GCS, predicted the global KOSCHI outcome, as well as the ODS-E mobility and mood outcomes. Neither GCS nor PTA duration correlated with the ODS-E communication, impulsivity/disinhibition, headache, fatigue, sensory impairments or somatic complaints outcomes. PTA duration measured by the WPTAS is a significant unique predictor of functional cognitive outcomes in children who sustained moderate-to-severe TBI, and in combination with the GCS, a significant predictor of global, and several specific functional outcomes.