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A new study looks at promising approaches to treating children’s attention and working memory difficulties

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Adaptive cognitive training programs may help treat attention and working memory disorders in children with sickle cell disease (SCD). Pediatric Psychology Journal show.

These neurocognitive deficits have practical implications for 100,000 individuals in the United States who suffer from SCD. This is because 20-40% of young people with SCD repeat grades at school and less than half of adults with SCD are employed. Interventions to prevent and treat neurocognitive deficits caused by SCD can significantly improve academic performance, vocational achievement and quality of life.

A promising approach using an adaptive cognitive training program (known as Cogmed Working Memory Training), led by Dr. Stephen Hardy, Director of Psychology and Patient Care Services at the Cancer and Hematology Center of the Children’s National Hospital. I considered. ) The patient completes at home using the iPad.

Using a randomized controlled trial design, children were asked to complete cogmed training sessions 3-5 times a week for about 30 minutes at a time until they completed 25 sessions. The Cogmed program includes game-like working memory exercises that adapt to your performance, and as performance improves, it becomes increasingly difficult over time. The team found that patients with sickle cell disease (SCD) who completed cognitive training interventions showed a significant improvement in visual working memory compared to the waiting list group using Cogmed after the waiting period. .. The therapeutic effect was particularly pronounced in patients who completed 10 sessions of training “dose”.

“Patients who completed at least 10 cognitive training sessions showed improved visual working memory, linguistic short-term memory, and math fluency,” said Dr. Hardy.

SCD increases the risk of neurocognitive impairment due to cerebrovascular complications (such as overt stroke and asymptomatic stroke) and characteristics of the underlying disorder (such as chronic anemia). The neurocognitive effects of SCD are most commonly associated with attention, working memory, and other executive function problems.

“This study shows that digital working memory training is an effective approach for treating neurocognitive deficits in adolescents. “Dr. Hardy added. Extend to tasks that include short-term verbal Mathematical performance when the patient sticks to the program and can complete at least 10 .. These benefits can have a significant impact on daily life, remembering and following school and home instructions, organizing tasks, or solving math problems that require short-term memorization of information. To facilitate. “

To date, little effort has been made to test interventions that address the neurocognitive problems experienced by many individuals with SCD. These findings indicate that abilities are variable and that non-pharmacological treatments exist.


Computer-based training studied in children with Fragile X Syndrome


For more information:
Steven J Hardy et al, Randomized Controlled Study of Working Memory Training in Pediatric Sickle Cell Disease, Pediatric Psychology Journal (2021). DOI: 10.1093 / jpepsy / jsab030

Quote: In a new study, attention to children (2021, April 8) obtained from https: //medicalxpress.com/news/2021-04-approach-attention-memory-difficulties-child on April 8, 2021 And are looking for promising approaches to treating working memory problems. html

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