New Research that Studies the Expectations of Recovery after Brain Damage

Released: 12-Mar-2015 8:05 AM EDT 
Source Newsroom: Association of Academic Physiatrists (AAP)
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Bernadette Rensing
Communications & Marketing Manager
Phone: 410-654-1000

Researchers at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago present a study at AAP 2015 in San Antonio that assessed family members’ expectations of recovery in patients with acute neurological injury and how these beliefs compare to those of the primary physiatrist caring for the patient. No previous studies have described family members’ views of recovery prior to initiation of rehabilitation following acute brain damage and how this may affect caregiver burden, patient outcome and discharge planning.

“Engagement of family members of brain damaged patients in rehabilitation complements therapeutic interventions. Discrepancies between the rehabilitation team and the family’s understanding about functional outcomes complicate discharge planning. Our study found that family member expectations of patient recovery were significantly more optimistic than physician predictions. This highlights the importance of thoroughly educating family members to set more realistic expectations, thereby potentially improving caregiver, patient, and rehabilitation professional interactions," said first author Ny-Ying Lam, MD, Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago

The RIC research next plans to analyze family characteristics associated with expectations of recovery and whether expectations change at discharge or at 6-month follow-up.

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