Improvement on the Coma Recovery Scale–Revised During the First Four Weeks of Hospital Stay Predicts Outcome at Discharge in Intensive Rehabilitation After Severe Brain Injury

Intensive Rehabilitation Unit Study Group of the IRCCS Don Gnocchi Foundation, Italy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Objectives: To evaluate the prognostic utility of serial assessment on the Coma Recovery Scale–Revised (CRS-R) during the first 4 weeks of intensive rehabilitation in patients surviving a severe brain injury. Design: Prospective cohort study. Setting: An intensive rehabilitation unit. Participants: Patients (N=110) consecutively admitted to the intensive rehabilitation unit. Inclusion criteria were (1) a diagnosis of unresponsive wakefulness syndrome (UWS) or minimally conscious state (MCS) caused by an acquired brain injury, and (2) aged >18 years. Interventions: All patients underwent clinical evaluations using the Italian version of the CRS-R during the first month of hospital stay. Main Outcome Measures: Behavioral classification on the CRS-R and the score on the Glasgow Outcome Scale (GOS) at final discharge. Patients transitioning from UWS to MCS or emergence from MCS (E-MCS), and from MCS to E-MCS were classified as patients with improved responsiveness (IR). Results: After a mean ± SD hospital stay of 5.3±2.7 months, 59 of 110 patients (53.6%) achieved IR. In the multivariable analysis, a higher CRS-R score change at week 4 (odds ratio =1.99; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.49–2.66; P<.001) was the only significant predictor of IR at discharge. Fifty-three patients (48.2%) were classified as severely impaired at discharge (GOS=3). In the multivariable analysis, higher GOS scores were related to a higher CRS-R score at admission (B=.051; 95% CI,.027–.074; P<.001), a higher CRS-R score change at week 4 (B=.087; 95% CI,.064–.110; P<.001), and an absence of severe infections (B=–.477; 95% CI, –.778 to –.176; P=.002). Conclusions: An improvement on the total CRS-R score and on different subscales across the first 4 weeks of inpatient rehabilitation discriminates patients who will have a better outcome at discharge, providing information for rehabilitation planning and for communication with patients and their caregivers.

Original languageEnglish
JournalArchives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 2018

Keywords

  • Brain injury
  • Coma
  • Prognosis
  • Rehabilitation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Rehabilitation

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