The Experience of Litigation after TBI. I: Barriers to Recovery

Yuka K. Matsuzawa, Marcel P. Dijkers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Prior studies have frequently noted elevated symptom endorsement among traumatic brain injury (TBI) litigants compared to nonlitigants with TBI, with little examination of potential litigation-related stressors. This qualitative study using semi-structured interviews with eight current and nine past litigants was designed to improve our understanding of factors associated with the distress experienced by TBI litigants. Part one of this two-part publication (part two is a separate paper in review) focuses on the litigation experience in the domains of emotional, cognitive, physical, and psychosocial functioning and coping strategies. Themes of experiencing stagnation, feeling confused, and being misunderstood emerged among current litigants, and themes of being able to move forward and feeling increased distress were extracted from reports by past litigants. These qualitative accounts may help medical and legal professionals to understand how litigation-related factors may interfere with TBI recovery and recognize barriers to recovery.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)388-396
Number of pages9
JournalPsychological Injury and Law
Issue number4
StatePublished - 25 Nov 2014


  • Adjustment
  • Barriers
  • Community reintegration
  • Litigation
  • Qualitative research
  • Symptomatology
  • Traumatic Brain Injury


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