This study examines the validity of the Delis–Kaplan Executive Function System (D-KEFS) in a traumatic brain injury (TBI) population compared to participants with orthopaedic injuries and normative controls. The utility of the D-KEFS was examined using a between groups design. One hundred patients with mild uncomplicated to severe TBI were recruited from a consecutive cohort of patients admitted as inpatients to a UK Major Trauma Centre and compared to 823 participants from the D-KEFS normative sample and 26 participants with orthopaedic injuries. Data were filtered for performance validity. Sample discrimination was calculated from D-KEFS subtest scores and derived index scores. Sensitivity to TBI severity was established. The TBI participants performed significantly lower on the D-KEFS Trail Making Test, Colour Word Interference, Colour Word Switching, Letter Fluency and Verbal Fluency Category Switching Total Words Correct. The D-KEFS index scores discriminated between TBI, orthopaedic and normative participants with large and moderate effect sizes, respectively. The D-KEFS demonstrated a dose–response relationship with TBI severity. These effects were robust to differences in premorbid intellectual functioning; however, D-KEFS performance was sensitive to performance on tests of mental processing speed. The use of a D-KEFS index score provides a robust and reliable discrimination of TBI patients from healthy control participants. This discrimination is not accounted for by premorbid intellect or the non-specific effects of trauma. The clinical and conceptual implications of these findings are considered.

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This post is Copyright: David Hacker,
Christopher A. Jones,
Yin Ming Chan,
Eyrsa Yasin,
Zoe Clowes,
Antonio Belli,
Julian Cooper,
Deepa Bose,
Andrew Hawkins,
Holly Davies,
Emily Paton | March 8, 2024
Wiley: Journal of Neuropsychology: Table of Contents