According to a study, having higher pre-injury intelligence and being younger can improve cognitive recovery two to five years after a mild to severe TBI.

The study, featuring healthy and TBI-affected sample groups, saw participants subjected to four intelligence tests: The National Adult Reading Test (NART), Digit Symbol Coding Task (DSCT), Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test (RAVLT) and Trail Making Test (TMT).

Of the TBI survivors, those who were younger, had a shorter period of post-traumatic amnesia and a higher premorbid IQ all performed relatively strongly.

The study was unable to gauge the importance of each of these factors, however.

According to lead researcher Dr Jennie Ponsford, of Monash University, the findings provide further evidence that injury severity is merely one of several predictors of cognitive recovery.

John Povlishock, editor of the Journal of Neurotrauma, adds: “[This] confirms the long held clinical impression that age and premorbid IQ are important factors in determining outcome in traumatic brain injury.

“These findings strongly endorse the role of cognitive reserve and age in the cognitive recovery seen following a traumatic brain injury.”

Click here for more on the study.