American Speech-Language-Hearing Association

EBP Compendium: Summary of Systematic Review

National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research for Research Training; Northern New Jersey Traumatic Brain Injury System; Henry Kessler Foundation
Activity-Related Quality of Life in Rehabilitation and Traumatic Brain Injury

Johnston, M. V., & Miklos, C. S. (2002).
Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 83(12 Suppl 2), S26-38.

Indicators of Review Quality:

The review addresses a clearly focused question No
Criteria for inclusion of studies are provided Yes*
Search strategy is described in sufficient detail for replication Yes
Included studies are assessed for study quality No
Quality assessments are reproducible No

Description: This is a review of the literature pertaining to the use of quality of life measures with individuals with traumatic brain injury. The focus of the article is to review the components of quality of life and the ability of measures to assess quality of life (QOL) in individuals with traumatic brain injury.

Question(s) Addressed:

Question not specifically stated.

Population: Individuals with traumatic brain injury

Intervention/Assessment: Quality of life measures

Number of Studies Included: Not stated

Years Included: Not stated

Findings:

Conclusions:

  • Assessment/Diagnosis
    • Assessment Areas
      • Cognitive-Communication
        • Quality of Life
          • Quality of life is an important component of assessment in rehabilitation and should be included more frequently as an outcome measure. Further research is warranted. Specifically, “the scaling of existing measures needs to be confirmed for applicability to TBI” (p. S35).
          • Research should focus on the unique characteristics and manifestations of this population “to identify and confirm activities that are most sensitive to TBI” (p. S35), and utilize methods to assess QOL other than verbal self-report.
    • Assessment Instruments
      • Cognitive-Communication
        • Quality of Life
          • The authors found a number of measures developed to assess quality of life after traumatic brain injury (TBI). However, the authors indicate that many scales are being inappropriately labeled as quality of life measures when they are instead measuring functional status and activity, and “do not tell us about the person’s affective QOL or whether the person feels satisfied with his/her activity level” (p. S29).
          • The authors found subjective rating scales to more closely reflect true quality of life, but reported a number of limitations (i.e. scales tending to be unstable, varying day by day, influenced by biases). The authors conclude that “objective measures of functioning are needed to supplement indices of people’s well being and vice versa” (p. S31).
          • Quality of life is an important component of assessment in rehabilitation and should be included more frequently as an outcome measure. Further research is warranted. Specifically, “the scaling of existing measures needs to be confirmed for applicability to TBI” (p. S35).
          • Research should focus on the unique characteristics and manifestations of this population “to identify and confirm activities that are most sensitive to TBI” (p. S35), and utilize methods to assess QOL other than verbal self-report. 

Keywords: Brain Injury, Cognitive Rehabilitation

Access the Review

Note:

*The inclusion criteria for this review is somewhat vague: "Study selection: Studies indexed under quality of life and brain injury" (p. 26).

Added to Compendium: December 2011

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