OBJECTIVE: The aim of the current study was to examine whether neural reserve influenced the duration of post-traumatic amnesia (PTA) following mild traumatic brain injury (MTBI). METHOD: The relationship between duration of PTA and both IQ and education was examined in a group of 59 MTBI patients. In addition, the effects of factors that could potentially diminish neural reserve, namely pre-injury hazardous alcohol consumption, pre-injury marijuana use, previous neurological damage, age and post-injury emotional distress on PTA duration were analysed. RESULTS: Significant, negative associations between PTA duration and both IQ and education were revealed. None of the other variables that were examined were significantly related to PTA duration. CONCLUSION: The findings were interpreted as providing preliminary evidence to suggest that reference to neural reserve may help explain between-subject variability in acute response to MTBI.
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