Neurological Disorders

ISSN: 2329-6895

Open Access

Psychosocial Quality of Life after Traumatic Brain Injury among Children in Uganda


Kadondi Merabu*, Kiyemba Henry, Herve Monka Lekuya, John Paul Magala and Joel Kiryabwire

Background: Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is a leading cause of sudden death and disability amongst young people. About 28% of children managed for TBI in Uganda report some degree of physical disability one year post-injury, but little is known about their psychosocial outcomes. We aimed to elucidate the psychosocial outcomes of children with TBI, and associated factors.

Methods: A cross-sectional study carried out in the Neurosurgical Unit of Mulago National Referral Hospital (MNRH), Uganda. The Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory version 4.0 parent proxy was administered to parents/guardians of children aged 6 to 17 years who were previously managed for TBI in MNRH more than a year post-injury; their medical records were also retrieved. Linear regression was used to determine factors associated with psychosocial outcomes.

Results: A total of 116 children were recruited. The overall mean psychosocial functioning was 82 ± 22.74. Using a standard deviation below the mean score as a cut-off standard, 85.7% of those children had good psychosocial functioning versus 14.3% with poor functioning. A long time of more than 2 years post- TBI (adjusted β=1.36, p=0.012) and absence of associated injuries (adjusted β=0.30, p=0.025) were associated with good psychosocial functioning, while TBI severity was negatively associated with poor psychosocial functioning (adjusted β=-0.36, p=0.041).

Conclusion: Children managed for TBI continue to have psychosocial dysfunctioning after one year following injury, although improving after 2 years. The severity of TBI and the presence of associated injuries are important determinants of the psychosocial quality of life of children. Multi-disciplinary supportive care should be very effective during the first 2 years following the injury to improve the quality of life of children with TBI.


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