Objective: To determine the course of self-reported life satisfaction in a spinal cord injury (SCI) cohort. Design: Prospective study using longitudinal data from the Injury Control Research Center. Participants: Adult persons with traumatic-onset SCI (n = 207) evaluated at 1, 2, 4, and 5 years postinjury using the Life Satisfaction Index-A. Results: A nonsignificant (P > 0.05) main effect of time was found using a repeated-measures analysis controlling for education and employment status. Several methods were used that provided a range of liberal to conservative estimates for missing data (ie, 38% retention rate at year 5). Subsequent missing data analyses tended to corroborate the finding of a nonsignificant effect of time, although the most conservative methods showed a significant decrease in life satisfaction between year 1 and year 5 postinjury (P < 0.05). Examination of numerous demographic, injury, and treatment-related characteristics at each follow-up time point suggested that the main findings of the study were not merely the result of differential dropout rates. Conclusion: Life satisfaction after the first year of injury remains largely the same over the next 4 years. Methodologic and analytic recommendations are discussed.