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J Clin Exp Neuropsychol. 2000 Oct;22(5):656-76.

Evaluation of attention process training and brain injury education in persons with acquired brain injury.

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Communication Disorders and Sciences, University of Oregon, Eugene, OR 97403, USA.


Fourteen patients with stable acquired brain injuries exhibiting attention and working memory deficits were given 10 weeks of attention process training (APT) and 10 weeks of brain injury education in a cross-over design. Structured interviews and neuropsychological tests were used prior to rehabilitation and after both treatments to determine the influence of the interventions on tasks of daily life and performance on attentional networks involving vigilance, orienting, and executive function. The overall results showed that most patients made improvements. Some of these gains were due to practice from repetitive administration of the tests. In addition, the type of intervention also influenced the results. The brain injury education seemed to be most effective in improving self-reports of psychosocial function. APT influenced self-reports of cognitive function and had a stronger influence on performance of executive attention tasks than was found with the brain injury education therapy. Vigilance and orienting networks showed little specific improvement due to therapy. However, vigilance level influenced the improvement with therapy on some tests of executive attention. We consider the implications of these results for future studies of the locus of attentional improvement and for the design of improved interventions.

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