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Neuropsychologia. 1996 Nov;34(11):1051-6.

Dual task performance after focal cerebral lesions and closed head injuries.

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Department of Neurosurgery, Helsinki University Central Hospital, Finland.


The aim of this study was to demonstrate that focal frontal lobe lesions and closed head injuries cause a deficit in the deliberate minimizing of dual task decrements that follow when two separate tasks should be done concurrently. In single tasks, subjects counted backwards and cancelled visual targets as quickly and accurately as possible on separate 1 min trials. In the dual task, they were required to do both tasks simultaneously, taking care that performance on neither task would be notably more impaired than on the other, as only the performance showing a larger percentage decrement from the corresponding single task performance was taken into account as the result of the test. Patients with acute closed head injury displayed more pronounced dual task decrement than the controls. This deficit was not secondary to inefficiency on the single tasks but was related to the depth of coma at admission, the acuteness of injury and age. Contrary to expectation, patients with focal frontal lobe lesions or patients with subacute closed head injury did not demonstrate abnormal dual task decrement.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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