Examination of Social Inferencing Skills in Men and Women After Traumatic Brain Injury

Dawn Neumann, Ryan Mayfield, Angelle M. Sander, Jeong Hoon Jang, Surya Sruthi Bhamidipalli, Flora M. Hammond

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: To examine sex differences in social inferencing deficits after traumatic brain injury (TBI) and to examine the odds of men and women being impaired while controlling for potential confounders. Design: Cross-sectional survey. Setting: Two TBI rehabilitation hospitals. Participants: One hundred five participants with TBI (60 men, 45 women) and 105 controls without TBI (57 men, 48 women) (N=210). Interventions: Not applicable. Main Outcome Measures: The Awareness of Social Inference Test (TASIT), which includes (1) Emotion Evaluation Test (EET), (2) Social Inference-Minimal (SI-M) test, and (3) Social Inference-Enriched (SI-E) test. Results: Within the control sample, men and women performed similarly on all 3 TASIT subtests. Within the group with TBI, men had significantly lower scores than women on EET (P=.03), SI-M (P=.01), and SI-E (P=.04). Using impairment cutoffs derived from the sample without TBI, we found significantly more men with TBI (30%) were impaired on the EET than women (16.7%); impairment was similar between men and women on SI-M and SI-E. When adjusting for executive functioning and education, the odds of being impaired on the EET did not significantly differ for men and women (odds ratio, 0.47; 95% CI, 0.16-1.40; P=.18). Conclusions: Although more men with TBI have emotion perception deficits than women, the difference appears to be driven by education and executive functioning. Research is needed in larger samples with more definitive norms to better understand social inferencing impairments in men and women with TBI as well as translation to interpersonal behaviors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)937-943
Number of pages7
JournalArchives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2022 May

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Funded by the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR) Field Initiated Program, Grant number 90IF0095-02-00.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Rehabilitation


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