Brief Test of Head Injury (BTHI)

Nancy Helm-Estabrooks and Gillian Hotz


Age: 10 to 59+ Years

Testing Time: 25 to 30 minutes

Administration: Individual


The Brief Test of Head Injury (BTHI) can quickly probe cognitive, linguistic, and communicative abilities of patients with severe head trauma. The BTHI provides useful diagnostic information for immediate treatment and a baseline for charting recovery. It is an ideal first assessment post-coma because it is brief and efficient (25 to 30 minutes to administer and 10 minutes to score). BTHI can be given to an individual in one or more short sessions, if necessary. Its sensitivity to small performance changes makes it useful for tracking recovery patterns during the period of spontaneous recovery. Results can be used in advising other team members on the best approaches for communicating with a patient and structuring individualised treatment. Experienced clinicians can identify problem areas to investigate more thoroughly, using modality specific standardised tests or informal measures.


Item clusters include Orientation and Attention, Following Commands, Linguistic Organization, Reading Comprehension, Naming, Memory, and Visual-Spatial Skills. The test yields cluster raw and standard scores and a total. The Total Raw Score can be converted to a percentile rank, standard score, or a normative Severity Score (Severe, Moderate, Mild, Borderline Normal). Internal consistency coefficients were generally high: .65 to .86 for item clusters and .95 for the BTHI Total Score. Test-retest (average 17 days interim) yielded significantly higher retest means. Correlations with the Glasgow Coma Scale at admission (.29) and at time of BTHI testing (.35) were low. Correlations with the Rancho Los Amigos Scale at time of BTHI testing were moderately high (.75).


COMPLETE BTHI KIT INCLUDES: Manual, 25 Record Forms, Stimulus Cards, and Manipulatives, all in a carrying case. (1991)


8980...BTHI Complete Kit      
8981...BTHI Manual
8982...BTHI Record Forms (25)
8983...BTHI Stimulus Card Set
8985...BTHI Manipulatives Kit
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