Memory rehabilitation programmes improve memory after left temporal lobe surgery
Memory rehabilitation programmes may improve memory in patients with left temporal lobe epilepsy after surgery, a new study has found.
Eighteen epilepsy patients who had received selective left temporal lobe surgery were designated to receive either active (n=9) or control (n=9) treatment programmes. Active treatment comprised eight weekly hour-long cognitive rehabilitation sessions, which included psycho-education and cognitive techniques for memory and attention.
Objective cognitive outcomes, memory outcomes and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) were the study outcome measures.
After the cognitive rehabilitation programme, those in the active treatment group showed significant improvements from baseline in the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test (45.4±7.4 vs 48.7±6.0; p=0.02), Boston Naming Test (38.3±11.6 vs 42.8±8.2; p=0.02) and Ecological Activity (1 [1 to 3] vs 2 [1 to 3]; p=0.02) scores.
In contrast, only scores in the Ecological Activity significantly improved in the control treatment group (1 [0 to 2] vs 1 [1-2]; p=0.05).
Similarly, self-perception of memory (p=0.008) and strategies used in everyday life (p=0.008) improved significantly after rehabilitation intervention in the active treatment group. No improvements were reported in the control group. Both groups were matched for subjective memory scores at baseline.
Based on fMRI data, significant changes in brain activation in the right anterior prefrontal cortex (Wilcoxon test statistic [W], 1.96; p=0.05), right inferior prefrontal gyrus (W, 2.43; p=0.02) and pars opercularis of Broca’s area in the left hemisphere (W, 2.67; p=0.01) were observed between the first and third scans of the active treatment group.
Activation in the right dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (W, 2.07; p=0.04) and left angular gyrus (W, 2.21; p=0.027) of the active treatment group showed significant changes between the second and third scans.