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Individual Differences in Working Memory Capacity Predicts Responsiveness to Memory Rehabilitation After Traumatic Brain Injury.

Individual Differences in Working Memory Capacity Predicts Responsiveness to Memory Rehabilitation After Traumatic Brain Injury.
Author Information (click to view)

Sandry J, Chiou KS, DeLuca J, Chiaravalloti ND,


Sandry J, Chiou KS, DeLuca J, Chiaravalloti ND, (click to view)

Sandry J, Chiou KS, DeLuca J, Chiaravalloti ND,

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Archives of physical medicine and rehabilitation 2015 11 3097(6) 1026-1029.e1 doi 10.1016/j.apmr.2015.10.109

Abstract
OBJECTIVE
To explore how individual differences affect rehabilitation outcomes by specifically investigating whether working memory capacity (WMC) can be used as a cognitive marker to identify who will and will not improve from memory rehabilitation.

DESIGN
Post hoc analysis of a randomized controlled clinical trial designed to treat learning and memory impairment after traumatic brain injury (TBI): 2 × 2 between-subjects quasiexperimental design (2 [group: treatment vs control] × 2 [WMC: high vs low]).

SETTING
Nonprofit medical rehabilitation research center.

PARTICIPANTS
Participants (N=65) with moderate to severe TBI with pre- and posttreatment data.

INTERVENTIONS
The treatment group completed 10 cognitive rehabilitation sessions in which subjects were taught a memory strategy focusing on learning to use context and imagery to remember information. The placebo control group engaged in active therapy sessions that did not involve learning the memory strategy.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE
Long-term memory percent retention change scores for an unorganized list of words from the California Verbal Learning Test-II.

RESULTS
Group and WMC interacted (P=.008, ηp(2)=.12). High WMC participants showed a benefit from treatment compared with low WMC participants. Individual differences in WMC accounted for 45% of the variance in whether participants with TBI in the treatment group benefited from applying the compensatory treatment strategy to learn unorganized information.

CONCLUSIONS
Individuals with higher WMC showed a significantly greater rehabilitation benefit when applying the compensatory strategy to learn unorganized information. WMC is a useful cognitive marker for identifying participants with TBI who respond to memory rehabilitation with the modified Story Memory Technique.

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