Friday, May 27, 2011

Cognitive Rehab in Schizophrenia: Can this help Developmental Disorders?

Can Cognitive Research in Schizophrenia help cognitive disorders for developmental disorders?

Interesting article about Cognitive Rehab for Schizophrenia makes me wonder how much of this is transferable to cognitive problems for autism and adhd. I know that there is a clinical trial of xxx for autism at the University of Pittsburg. The article below includes cognitive training, computer based training, and compensatory strategies such as Errorless learning (EL) and cognitive adaptation training (CAT). SchizophreniaImage via Wikipedia

Cognitive enhancement therapy (CET), developed by Hogarty and colleagues,38 includes small-group sessions that emphasize social cognition.

Neurocognitive enhancement therapy (NET), a program that was developed by Bell and colleagues,39 pairs a drill and practice style computerized CR with vocational rehabilitation programs.

EL aims to eliminate any errors when new tasks are being learned. This approach reduces each new task to be learned into small component parts that are then overlearned through “imitative learning and repetitive practice of perfect task execution.”

CAT introduces environmental adaptations that are suited specifically to the executive impairments common among schizophrenia patients. Its aim is to reduce the cognitive burdens, functional requirements, and overall stress of everyday living in each patient’s personal space.29
 
During home visits, CAT therapists check for safety hazards and ensure that necessary supplies are available. The therapists may also assist in modifying and reorganizing the home in a manner customized to the individual patient’s needs. For example, in the bedroom, clothing drawers are labeled and colored bins are used for the sorting of dirty and clean clothes. In the bathroom, grooming supplies are moved to be more easily accessible and pill containers are introduced to organize medications. In addition, patients can be trained to use watches or other devices with alarms to cue themselves to take medications and complete other tasks.


The team also used computer based games such as Posit Science to help with auditory and visual sensory processes, such as tone and phoneme discrimination, as well as higher-order cognitive processes, such as verbal memory.
There is also a component of the program that integrates these therapies with Return to Work and strategies for vocational rehab.
I really wish something comprehensive like this existed for my condition. I think these researchers are onto something that really doesn't exist comprehensively for adults with developmental disorders.  What I like is that there is some acknowledge of physical conditions such as hearing and visual problems coupled with higher order cognitive problems.  These higher order cognitive therapies aren't left alone in the brain but are used to help people function in social and work environments.

It would be really nice to walk into some center and have a one-stop shop for therapy and rehab.


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