Weltnachrichten – AU – Scientists investigate deficits in processing speed in people with spinal cord injuries

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A team of rehabilitation researchers studied processing speed deficits in people with spinal cord injury (SCI). . They found that the SCI group and older controls had similar activation patterns, but the SCI group was significantly different from their age-matched controls.

The scientists compared SCI patients and their brain activation patterns with those of healthy age-appropriate controls and older healthy individuals.

The article « The Neural Mechanisms Underlying Processing Speed ​​Deficits in Individuals with a Spinal Cord Injury: A Pilot Study » was published by Brain Topography. The authors are scholars with expertise in cognitive rehabilitation research and SCI rehabilitation: Glenn Wylie, DPhil, Nancy D. . Dr. Chiaravalloti, Dr. Erica Weber, Dr. Helen Genova and Dr. Trevor Dyson-Hudson of the Kessler Foundation and Jill M. . Wecht, EdD, from James J.. . Peters VA Medical Center.

Individuals with chronic SCI are at increased risk of cognitive deficits that are similar to the deficits associated with the aging process, leading to the theory of “accelerated cognitive aging”. As previously reported by this team, the deficits affect processing speed, new learning and memory, and verbal language skills, which are affected as we age. This study is the first to examine the neural mechanisms of higher order cognitive tasks in individuals with SCI. The focus was on processing speed, which is known to be affected by SCI and aging and is an essential part of cognitive function and everyday activities.

The 30 participants were participants in a larger study who underwent optional neuroimaging studies at the Kessler Foundation’s Rocco Ortenzio Neuroimaging Center – 10 people with cervical SCI, 10 age-matched controls, and 10 healthy elderly people. In addition to the conventional neuropsychological test methods, the processing speed in the scanner was tested with the help of time-controlled letter comparison tasks during functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). . This study was the first to use the modified letter comparison test.

Significant differences in brain activation were found between the SCI group and the age-matched control group, but the SCI and older groups showed similar patterns, including activation of the hippocampal, frontal and parietal areas. « This suggests that individuals with SCI make up for deficits in processing speed by relying on the areas of the brain involved in executive control and memory, » noted Dr. . Chiaravalloti ”, which supports the theory of accelerated brain aging according to SCI. ”

Despite the limitations of the sample size and the degree of injury, the study is an important contribution to our understanding of the effects of SCI on cognition, says Dr. . Wylie, director of the Ortenzio Center. « Our ability to observe brain activation while the individual is performing certain cognitive tasks provides new information on the mechanisms underlying the cognitive deficits that we now know affect a significant portion of the SCI population, » said Dr. . Said Wylie. “The development of therapies that target these deficiencies depends on our pursuit of this line of research, which can benefit other populations affected by slower processing speeds. ”

Spinal Cord Injury, Kessler Foundation, Research, Spinal Column

World News – AU – Scientists investigate deficits in processing speed in people with spinal cord injuries
Related title :
Scientists investigate processing speed deficits for people with spinal cord injuries
Processing speed for people with spinal cord injuries

Ref: https://www.hindustantimes.com

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