Risk of Adverse Outcomes after SCI


Risk of Adverse Outcomes after SCI:
A Longitudinal Study

The purpose of this longitudinal study is to identify risk and protective factors for three types of health outcomes after SCI by testing two empirical models for risk of adverse outcomes. Multiple types of predictor variables were first measured in 1997–1998, including: (a) biographic status and injury variables, (b) health behaviors, (c) psychological status, and (d) social support. Variables were selected using a bi-dimensional behavioral model that breaks down independent risk and protective behavioral dimensions and a general risk model that includes four sets of predictor variables:

  • Biographic and injury predictors
  • Psychological proxy variables
  • Environmental factors
  • Behavioral variables

Measures of general health and specific secondary conditions will be assessed in the proposed follow-up using self-reports, 10 years after collection of the independent variables in order to identify factors associated with the development of secondary conditions. This length interval ensures adequate time for risk and protective behaviors to develop into secondary conditions, as preliminary research has suggested that patterns of secondary conditions may take several years to unfold, particularly among long-term survivors. Cross-sectional data will be used with an exploratory general linear model to develop specific model predictions. Structural equation modeling will be applied to 10-year longitudinal data to refine model predictions and address statistical issues such as multicolinearity.

The study results will guide prevention efforts by targeting both individuals who are at high risk for adverse outcomes and the risk and protective factors that may serve as the targets for intervention.

Funding Agency: National Institutes of Health (http://www.nih.gov) 1R01 NS 48117-01 (2006-2012)

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