Despite advances in the management of aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH), a significant percentage of survivors are left with persistent cognitive, behavioral, and emotional changes that affect their day-to-day lives. This article describes outcome at 3 months after aneurysmal SAH in 61 patients, using the Extended Glasgow Outcome Scale (GOSE) and the Functional Status Examination (FSE). The GOSE provides a measure of overall functional outcome but does not address the specifics of functional limitations. The FSE, in addition to identifying functional limitations, provides insight into factors contributing to them and the extent to which SAH survivors perceive them as affecting their day-to-day activities. The findings of this study demonstrate that SAH survivors have considerable limitations in functional status in almost all areas of daily living at 3 months following SAH. The limitations were attributed to a variety of physical, cognitive, and emotional factors, and they were reported to be moderately to severely bothersome in almost half of the individuals. The findings highlight the need for appropriate rehabilitation, education, and support for SAH survivors and their families to enhance coping and improve quality of life, given the substantial and persistent impact of SAH.
Questions or comments about this article may be directed to: Catherine J. Kirkness, PhD RN CNN(C), Biobehavioral Nursing and Health Systems. University of Washington, Box 357266, Seattle. WA 98195–7266. She is a research assistant professor at the University of Washington, Seattle.
Jo Marie Thompson, BSN RN, is a research assistant in Biobehavioral Nursing and Health Systems at the University of Washington.
Barbara A. Ricker, MPH RN, is a research nurse in Biobehavioral Nursing and Health Systems at the University of Washington.
Ann Buzaitis, MN ARNP, is a research nurse in Biobehavioral Nursing and Health Systems at the University of Washington.
David W. Newell, MD, is a professor in the Department of Neurological Surgery, Harborview Medical Center, at the University of Washington.
Sureyya Dikmen, PhD, is a professor in the Department of Rehabilitation Medicine at the University of Washington.
Pamela H. Mitchell, PhD FAAN RN, is the Elizabeth S. Soule Professor and Associate Dean for Research in the University of Washington School of Nursing. She also is a adjunct professor in the Department of Health Services, SPHCM.
© 2002 American Association of Neuroscience Nurses