An acquired brain injury refers to any brain injury that happens after birth. Examples can include but are not limited to an anoxic brain injury (loss of oxygen to the brain), traumatic brain injury, stroke, arterial venous malformation or aneurysm. Please refer to the conditions pages listed below for specific definitions and symptoms associated with the condition.


Symptoms following an acquired brain injury may include:
  • Physical Problems
  • Cognitive (Thinking) Problems
  • Difficulties with:
    • Attention
    • Memory
    • Problem solving
    • Judgment/Reasoning
    • Planning/Organization
  • Emotional/Behavioral Problems
    • Restlessness
    • More dependent on others
    • Mood swings/Irritability
    • Fatigue
    • Poor self-awareness
    • Difficulty playing with others
  • Speech and Language Problems
    Difficulties with:
    • Word finding
    • Explaining
    • Understanding others
    • Following along or participating in a conversation
  • Physical Problems:
    • Balance Problems
    • Tight muscles
    • Lack of coordination
    • Inability  to walk 
    • Unable to use hands
    • Unable to perform daily living skills; eat, dress, bathe


Your child may be referred to a  Speech and Language evaluation, Physical therapy evaluation or Occupational Therapy evaluation.
The evaluation will include:
  • Reviewing your child’s medical history and injury (if applicable)
  • Testing your child’s speech, language, and cognition skills
  • Observing how your child interacts and engages in conversation.
  • A physical exam
  • Testing your child’s muscle strength and range of motion
  • Testing your child walking ability
  • Observing your child’s ability to perform daily activities
  • Discussing the results of the evaluation and developing a treatment plan if indicated


Parent involvement is central to your child’s success in treatment. The therapist will educate you and your child on how to use the skills learned in therapy at home and in the community.
Therapy may include:
  • Cognitive skill development
  • Speech treatment
  • Language treatment
  • Social skill treatment
  • Movement skills development
  • Activity of daily living skill development 
  • Parent education
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