Dr Karen Hoffman

Head of Trauma Rehabilitation Research

I am a post doc research fellow investigating rehabilitation needs and recovery of trauma patients. 


My initial work at the Centre focused on quantifying rehabilitation needs in relation to injury severity.  This facilitated us to better understand the complex rehabilitation needs of multi-trauma patients. These are often overlooked by condition specific rehabilitation services such as Neurorehabilitation.  I also investigated the long term recovery of trauma patients.  This included 12 month follow up of functional recovery of patients as well as quality-of-life and post traumatic stress symptoms.  Both these projects identified the significant burden experienced by trauma patients in terms of access to appropriate rehabilitation and long term recovery.  These findings led to the work I am currently engaged with.

Rehabilitation Research

I am currently working on several projects in a variety of settings.  As lead for trauma rehabilitation research at the Royal London Hospital, we aim to improve recovery of patients and support their families.  Our research identified a significant absence of support structures and information for trauma patients and families.  In an effort to address some of these concerns locally and nationally, we developed a website called AfterTrauma which provides information and support for patients and families.  This is the only trauma specific website in the UK.  We have future aspirations to develop this into a more interactive site to enable patients to track their recovery.

My role as research lead within the London Trauma System (LTS) Rehabilitation Network allows me to evaluate rehabilitation needs on a much larger scale in one of the largest trauma systems in Europe.  We have several projects planned including a Service Evaluation of Trauma Rehabilitation (SERT) within the LTS.  Locally I contribute to the coordination of rehabilitation within trauma units within the North East London and Essex Trauma Network (NELETN).

I am programme manager for the HQIP National Clinical Audit of Trauma Rehabilitation.  The audit aims to determine the provision, quality and efficiency of specialist rehabilitation services across England and Wales and improve the quality of care for people with complex rehabilitation needs following neurological injury/illness or major trauma.  

I am the chief investigator for the development of a Trauma Rehabilitation Core Set based on the World Health Organisation International Classification of Function Disability and Health (ICF).  The implementation of a Core Set nationally and internationally will enable comparison of outcomes for trauma patients.  Coded ICF categories will define the impairments, function and participation of patients and also describe environmental aspects and psychosocial issues impacting on recovery.  These data will allow greater understanding of specific rehabilitation priorities and outcomes of trauma patients not previously characterised.

I continue to be involved clinically and provide training and education to occupational therapists and physiotherapist focused on rehabilitation of  physical and cognitive impairments following injury or illness.


email: k.hoffman@qmul.ac.uk
Tel: +44 (0) 203 594 0721


  • Radford K, Sutton C, Sach T et al. (2018). Early, specialist vocational rehabilitation to facilitate return to work after traumatic brain injury: the FRESH feasibility RCT. Health Technol Assess 22, (33) 1-124.
  • Rich JA, Coleman J, Devaux C et al. (2017). Acute rehabilitation after resuscitative endovascular balloon occlusion of the aorta (REBOA) in major trauma. BMJ Case Rep 2017.
  • Hoffman K (2016). Development of an ICF rehabilitation framework for patients with major trauma. BRITISH JOURNAL OF OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY 7951-52.
  • Hoffman KP, Playford DE, Grill E et al. (2016). Minimum data set to measure rehabilitation needs and health outcome after major trauma: application of an international framework. Eur J Phys Rehabil Med 52, (3) 331-346.
  • Radford KA, Phillips J, Jones T et al. (2015). Facilitating return to work through early specialist health-based interventions (FRESH): protocol for a feasibility randomised controlled trial. Pilot Feasibility Stud 124-.
  • Hoffman K, Cole E, Playford ED et al. (2014). Health outcome after major trauma: what are we measuring?. PLoS One 9, (7) e103082-.
  • Pandyan AD, Radford K, Ashford S et al. (2013). NICE ON REHABILITATION New guidelines on rehabilitation likely to restrict practices and stifle innovation. BMJ-BRITISH MEDICAL JOURNAL 347.
  • Hoffman K, West A, Nott P et al. (2013). Measuring acute rehabilitation needs in trauma: preliminary evaluation of the Rehabilitation Complexity Scale. Injury 44, (1) 104-109.
  • Khan F, Amatya B, Hoffman K (2012). Systematic review of multidisciplinary rehabilitation in patients with multiple trauma. BRITISH JOURNAL OF SURGERY 9988-96.
  • Brohi K, Cole E, Hoffman K (2011). Improving outcomes in the early phases after major trauma. Curr Opin Crit Care 17, (5) 515-519.

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