A European Chart for Evaluation of Patients with Traumatic Brain Injury
D. Neil Brooks
In 1988, 40 European, Scandinavian, and North American experts (physicians, psychologists, social workers, lawyers, family association representatives, etc.) met in Brussels to derive guidelines for a minimum assessment of head-injured people. This workshop led to a research contract between the European Brain Injury Society (EBIS) and the European Economic Community (EEC) Directorate for Science to develop a European Evaluation Chart. A preliminary chart was constructed. After reliability studies were achieved, a more definitive version was completed, and this has been used to examine 495 patients within the various countries of Europe. Validation studies have shown excellent agreement between severity of injury and many different aspects of outcome and between disability, social, vocational, and family handicap. Further developments of the chart continue to make it shorter and more "user friendly."
Head injury causes severe and prolonged disability ( Brooks, 1991), yet the deficits may be invisible or minor to the naive examiner ( Brooks, 1984). Such patients are evaluated by many different specialists, but all too often the specialist has little knowledge or experience of traumatic brain injury (TBI), therefore evaluation may