Development in Children After Severe Head Injury

  • G. Lehmkuhl
  • W. Thoma


As a result of empirical studies various authors seem to agree with the notion that certain specific psychopathological and neuropsychological deficiencies are likely to occur following severe craniocerebral trauma suffered during infancy or childhood (Rutter et al. 1980; Brown et al. 1981; Chadwick et al. 1981a). Head injury and psychiatric symptoms are known often to be associated, although psychopathological symptoms do not occur as a rule. Up to now, there have been no studies investigating interactions between age at injury, severity of trauma, and ensuing psychiatric symptoms, and how these issues are related to the child’s cognitive capacity. Previous studies have yielded high prevalence rates of psychiatric disturbances in children who have suffered severe head injury. Psychiatric outcome seems to be directly related to severity of trauma, social and family disadvantage, pretraumatic functioning, neurological sequelae, and development of posttraumatic epilepsy (Black et al. 1969; Rune 1970; Klonoff and Paris 1974; Shaffer et al. 1975; Brown et al. 1981).


Head Injury Psychosocial Stress Severe Head Injury Psychiatric Disturbance Mild Head Injury 
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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1990

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  • G. Lehmkuhl
  • W. Thoma

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