Journal:Journal of Head Trauma Rehabilitation
Year, Volume, Issue, Page(s):06, 21, , 424
Objectives: Because of underidentification and misidentification of children with brain injury (BI), there is a need for screening instruments that can identify schoolchildren who may have had a BI.1 The present study examined the Brain Injury Screening Questionnaire’s (BISQ’s) utility as a screening measure for BI in children. Hypotheses: (1) The BISQ could be used to identify public school children with an increased probability of having sustained a BI and (2) children identified by the BISQ as having an increased probability of having sustained a BI would have more cognitive impairments and more cognitive, behavioral, and physical symptoms than those with a low probability of having sustained a BI. Participants: An ethnically diverse convenience sample of 174 children aged 12–19 recruited in 3 urban public schools. None had previously been identified by the school system as having a BI. Methods: BISQs were completed completed by the parent and child by 74% of the sample, by the child alone for 21% of the sample, and by the parent alone for 5% of the sample. Parents provided behavioral evaluations (Conner’s rating scales) on 89% of the sample and teachers provided behavioral evaluations on 55% of the sample. Forty-eight percent of the sample completed a neuropsychological testing battery. Results: BISQ findings indicated that 9% of the participants had a “high probability” of having sustained a BI. Significantly more cognitive, behavioral, and physical symptoms and behavioral problems were reported in the children in the “high probability” group than in the “low probability” group. Eighty percent of the “high probability” children tested had neuropsychological evidence of cognitive impairment. Conclusions: The findings support the utility of the BISQ as part of a screening process.