Female relatives of defined groups of consecutive male minor and severe head injury victims were seen at home 3 months after the injury. The relatives of the severely injured suffered significant psychiatric morbidity compared to the minor head injury relatives. They also showed poorer functioning in social roles associated with the home. There was no difference in the vulnerability of either wives or mothers of the head injury victims. It is argued that there is a need for support for the relatives of those who have suffered severe brain injury.
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