Social communication skills in persons with post-acute traumatic brain injury: three perspectives.

OBJECTIVE: To describe social communication skills problems identified by individuals with traumatic brain injury (TBI) compared to significant other (SO) and clinician ratings; and associations between these skills and participation outcome measures.

DESIGN: Cohort study.

METHODS: Sixty individuals with TBI > or = 1 year post-injury were administered measures of social communication, societal participation, social integration and life satisfaction. Clinicians and SOs rated the social communication skills of the subjects.

RESULTS: Subjects were able to identify social communication skills problems, associated with lower ratings of community integration and satisfaction with life. Males reported higher scores in social communication and social integration than females. SOs and clinicians identified more social skills problems than subjects.

CONCLUSIONS: Persons with TBI experience social communication skills deficits, associated with decreased societal participation and life satisfaction. Further research is needed to determine efficacy of social communication skills treatment and association with improved participation and satisfaction with life.