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PLoS One. 2016 Jul 18;11(7):e0159362. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0159362. eCollection 2016.

How Do Persons with Mild Acquired Cognitive Impairment Use Information and Communication Technology and E-Services? Results from a Swedish National Survey.

Author information

Health Informatics Centre (HIC), Department of Learning, Informatics, Management and Ethics (LIME), Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.
Division of Rehabilitation Medicine, Department of Clinical Sciences Danderyds Hospital, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.



Mild acquired cognitive impairment is a term used to describe a sub-group of persons with mild cognitive impairment who are expected to reach a stable cognitive level over time. One tactic that can be considered for further developing treatment for this group is the use of information and communication technology and e-services. The purpose of this study was to investigate the current use of regular e-services and social media by this group as well as their user experiences.


Data were collected through a self-administered survey and analyzed using quantitative methods. The questionnaire included questions regarding the participants' use of and experience with e-services. Categorization of e-services was based on and cross-validated with the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF). To estimate participants' degree and type of impairment, the Cognitive Failure Questionnaire (CFQ), measuring cognitive difficulties in performing everyday tasks, was added.


In total, 282 persons with acquired brain injury participated in the survey. The participants' CFQ scores showed that they were suffering from mild to moderate cognitive impairments, most often acquired from traumatic brain injuries (40%). The majority (89%) used e-services in different categories whereof the most popular and essential ones were communication services (59%) and banking (39%) services. Participants with higher total CFQ scores (>58) used more e-services in most of the categories compared to participants with lower scores (<31). Although participants were interested in social media, they were annoyed by advertisements and the Internet speed in general. Some participants reported privacy concerns and addictive behavior. However, they mostly considered e-services to be trustworthy and supportive in different contexts. The usage of electronic devices decreased by age with the exception of electronic tablets that were used by older participants approximately as frequently as by other age groups.


Although persons with mild to moderate acquired brain injury used various e-services that are not customized for them, very few participants used self-care health services (apps) and readers (e-readers). Further studies are needed on utilizing these identified aspects for this group to support them with their chronic condition.

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