Traumatic brain injuries in children are a common reason for attending an accident and emergency department. Although most do not lead to serious consequences, traumatic brain injuries are the main cause of death and disability in children older than 1 year in developed countries. It is estimated that 1 in 10 children will have a significant traumatic brain injury throughout their childhood. In these cases, a personalised assessment is needed to come up with the most appropriate treatment plan.
The involvement and active participation of families in the rehabilitation process.
Sequelae of a traumatic brain injury in children
The most common cognitive, behavioural and emotional impairments after a traumatic head injury are attention deficits, language disorders, memory problems, executive dysfunction, and behavioural and mood disorders.
The following will also appear, depending on the severity of the brain injury:
Develop resilience and activate mechanisms and resources to cope with the new situation.
Paediatric neurorehabilitation plays a key role when treating a traumatic brain injury in childhood. Specialised medical, surgical and rehabilitative treatment will help to restore lost functionality, minimising deficits that are secondary to the injury, and helping to gain maximum functional autonomy, quality of life, and psychomotor and educational development corresponding to the patient’s age.
The Child and Youth Rehabilitation Unit of the Institut Guttmann cares for boys and girls between the ages of 0 and 16 with physical, cognitive and behavioural functional sequelae derived from neurological diseases or injuries. It also offers regular clinical follow-up during childhood and adolescence, both to control the evolution of the disability and to prevent possible complications derived from neurological injury.
Later phases in traumatic brain injury in children
Patients can follow personalised treatment programmes to optimise their functional capacity or address a specific problem resulting from their neurological impairment. At Guttmann Barcelona patients can follow a totally personalised training and functionality improvement programme.
The Guttmann Barcelona, Brain Health and Neurorehabilitation Institute offers personalised training and function improvement programmes, as well as specialised intensive programmes.
The Institut Guttmann regularly organises sports camps for young people between the ages of 10 and 18. At these camps, young people enjoy sporting and cultural activities and work on therapeutic aspects related to carrying out activities of daily living, planning tasks, wheelchair handling, accessibility, training in the community, etc.
The Sports&Life activities programme includes activities aimed at young children. Sports&Life makes it possible to do sport and get involved in other social and cultural activities in a different environment to usual and in an inclusive way, contributing to the mood and health of participants. The activities, organised in partnership with other specialised organisations, are coordinated and supervised by the Institut Guttmann and are always accompanied and supervised by hospital staff.