Approximately 200 new bead injuries are reported per 100,000 population each year in the United States. These injuries are more common in younger men and caused most frequently by motor vehicle accidents.7,14 Head injuries occur suddenly and unexpectedly.21 Head injury affects not only the individual but the family as well. The family's functional abilities are threatened by the head injury of a family member. The family's adaptation to head injury and life-threatening events surrounding the injury has a significant impact on the patient's rehabilitation.29 A family's response of denial or lack of hope in the future has been identified as a major obstacle to successful adaptation.29 The hopeless family may be unable to make necessary changes at home or learn important aspects of the patient's care.29 Depending upon the extent of the bead injury, the family needs to know that most head trauma patients make significant progress in the first six months. Progress usually continues, less dramatically, for the next two to three years.7
Questions or comments about this article may be directed to: Leayn H. Johnson, RN, PhD, CNS, 16932 Edgewater Lane Huntington Beach. California 92649. She is an associate professor.
Sharon L. Roberts, RN, PhD, FAAN, is a professor at California State University in Long Beach. Califormia.
© 1996 American Association of Neuroscience Nurses