The study was published in the February 2014 issue of Brain Injury. (Yael Goverover, Nancy D. Chiaravalloti: The impact of self-awareness and depression on subjective reports of memory, quality- of-life and satisfaction with life following TBI. (doi:10.3109/02699052.2013.860474) Yael Goverover, PhD, OT, is a visiting scientist at Kessler Foundation. She is an associate professor at New York University. Dr. Goverover is a recipient of the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) Fellowship award (Mary Switzer Award, 2003) and multiple grants from the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.
Impairment in self-awareness (the ability to accurately recognize one’s own abilities and limitations) often occurs after TBI. Intact self-awareness would result in accurate self-reports; however, intact self-awareness can also be associated with depressive symptoms. This is the first study to examine the complex relationship between self-awareness and depression, while also accounting for  the self-reporting of well being and QoL by individuals with TBI.
Researchers studied 30 community-based adults with TBI of at least one-year duration. Testing included the Awareness Questionnaire, Health Status Questionnaire (SF-12), Satisfaction with Life Scale (SWLS), Memory Functioning Questionnaire (MFQ), and the Chicago Multiscale Depression Inventory (CMDI).
“Our findings help answer the question: What abilities must be considered when interpreting responses on a self-report questionnaire?” explained Nancy Chiaravalloti, PhD, director of TBI Research at Kessler Foundation, and project director, Northern NJ TBI System. “These results showed first that higher levels of self-awareness are associated with poorer QoL, reports of poor memory performance and better strategy use; and also that symptoms of depression are significantly associated with self-reports of QoL and Satisfaction with life (greater depression associated with lower QoL and lower satisfaction),” reported Dr. Chiaravalloti. “Because of this impact of depressive symptoms, it is very important to diagnose and treat depression in rehabilitation and develop comprehensive treatment plans for individuals with TBI.”
Supported by NIDRR (H133A070037)
About TBI Research at Kessler Foundation
Nancy Chiaravalloti, PhD, is director of TBI Research and Neuropsychology & Neuroscience Research. Kessler Foundation is one of 16 federally funded model systems that form a national comprehensive system of care, research, education and dissemination aimed at improving quality of life for people with TBI. The Northern New Jersey TBI System (NNJTBIS), a collaborative effort of Kessler Foundation, Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation, and Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, is supported by grant #H133A120030 from the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR), Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, US Dept of Education. Drs. John DeLuca and Nancy Chiaravalloti are project directors of the NNJTBIS. In addition to NIDRR and NIH, TBI research is funded by the New Jersey Commission on Brain Injury Research, the Department of Veterans Affairs and Children’s Specialized Hospital. Kessler Foundation researchers have faculty appointments in the department of physical medicine and rehabilitation at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School.
About Kessler Foundation
Kessler Foundation, a major nonprofit organization in the field of disability, is a global leader in rehabilitation research that seeks to improve cognition, mobility and long-term outcomes, including employment, for people with neurological disabilities caused by diseases and injuries of the brain and spinal cord. Kessler Foundation leads the nation in funding innovative programs that expand opportunities for employment for people with disabilities. For more information, visit KesslerFoundation.org.
Carolann Murphy, PA; 973.324.8382; [email protected]
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