The effect of internet-based cognitive rehabilitation in persons with memory impairments after severe traumatic brain injury

Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Rochester, MN 55905, USA.
Brain Injury (Impact Factor: 1.81). 10/2009; 23(10):790-9. DOI: 10.1080/02699050903196688
Source: PubMed


The current study examined whether cognitive rehabilitation delivered over the Internet was associated with improvements in functioning.
A total of 14 individuals with medically documented traumatic brain injury completed this study. Participants completed 30 sessions of an active calendar acquisition intervention and 30 sessions of a control diary intervention in a cross-over study design for a total of 60 online sessions. All sessions were completed using an instant messaging system via the Internet. Measures of cognitive functioning, ratings of memory and mood and frequency of use of common memory and cognitive compensation techniques were gathered from participants and family members.
There were no significant differences between the active and control conditions on the primary outcome measure of memory functioning. However, significant improvements in use of compensatory strategies as well as family reports of improved memory and mood were observed following completion of all sessions. Individuals with less use of compensatory strategies at baseline were significantly less likely to complete the study.
These results suggest that the Internet may be an effective delivering mechanism for compensatory cognitive rehabilitation, particularly among individuals who are already utilizing some basic compensatory strategies.

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    • "calendar, planners, cue cards) with each compensatory technique rated on a 7-point Likert scale. Selected questions were used from this instrument based upon our prior research (Bergquist et al, 2009). "
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    • "Using an instant messaging system over the internet, participants interacted with a therapist on the internet and were taught to use a calendar and a diary to compensate for memory problems. Results showed evidence for improved memory and mood following completion of all sessions and suggest that internet based cognitive rehabilitation may be beneficial [18]. Also, Arundine and colleagues incorporated telephone cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) in their assessment of psychological distress among ABI patients and found commensurate benefits of telephone CBT relative to conventional treatment [19]. "
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