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Neuropsychol Rehabil. 2016 Oct;26(5-6):866-94. doi: 10.1080/09602011.2015.1102746. Epub 2015 Oct 23.

Cognitive training approaches to remediate attention and executive dysfunction after traumatic brain injury: A single-case series.

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a School of Psychological Sciences , Monash University , Clayton , Victoria , Australia.
b Monash-Epworth Rehabilitation Research Centre, Epworth HealthCare , Richmond , Victoria , Australia.
c Centre of Excellence in Traumatic Brain Injury Rehabilitation, National Trauma Research Institute, Alfred Hospital , Prahran , Victoria , Australia.


Attentional deficits are common following traumatic brain injury (TBI) and interfere with daily functioning. This study employed a single-case design to examine the effects of individualised strategy training on attention beyond the effects of computerised training using Attention Process Training 3 (APT-3), and to examine the participants' subjective experience of these approaches. An ABCA (baseline, APT-3, strategy training, follow-up) design was repeated across three participants with severe TBI. Outcomes were measured on alternate versions of the oral Symbol Digit Modalities Test (SDMT) and cancellation tasks; generalisation with the Test of Everyday Attention (TEA) and self and significant other (SO) ratings on the Rating Scale of Attentional Behaviour (RSAB); and participant experiences with semi-structured interviews. Planned Tau-U analyses revealed improvements in speed of processing on the SDMT and the automatic condition of the cancellation task after APT-3 and at follow-up, but with most improvement after strategy training. Limited generalisation was evident on TEA subtests and self-RSAB ratings. SO-RSAB ratings were mixed after APT-3, but demonstrated improvement after strategy training. Variability in attentional deficits and everyday attentional requirements between patients required individualised goals and approaches to rehabilitation. This study highlights the need for individualised rehabilitation of attention to improve everyday functioning after TBI.


Attention; Computer training; Rehabilitation; Strategy training; Traumatic brain injury

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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