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To investigate effects of pediatric head trauma on parent mental health, parent-child relationship and family functioning 2 weeks after discharge.


Ninety-seven mothers and 37 fathers of 106 preschool children hospitalized with head injury completed Mental Health Inventory (MHI), Parenting Stress Index, Family Adaptability and Cohesion Evaluation Scales II (FACES II) and Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support (MSPSS) 2 weeks after discharge, and perceived injury severity, Parental Concerns Scale (PCS), Parental Stressors Scale: Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PSS: PICU), and MHI 24-48 h after hospital admission.


Mental health after discharge was related to social support and baseline mental health. Mothers' parental distress was related to perceived injury severity and social support. Greater family cohesion was related to baseline mental health, social support, and being in a two-parent family for mothers, and to social support for fathers.


Parents' mental health and social support were important for parent mental health and family cohesion after discharge. Perceived injury severity and parent reactions to hospitalization also played a role.


Author Accepted Manuscript.

The publisher's final edited version of this article is available at J Pediatr Psychol



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