Cognitive Rehab Beneficial for Cancer Survivors

Compared with standard care, a web-based cognitive rehab better improves cognitive symptoms in cancer patients.
Compared with standard care, a web-based cognitive rehab better improves cognitive symptoms in cancer patients.

HealthDay News — A web-based cognitive rehabilitation program can improve cognitive symptoms in cancer survivors, according to a study published online in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Victoria J Bray, from Liverpool Hospital in Sydney, and colleagues recruited 242 adult cancer survivors with a primary malignancy who had completed 3 or more cycles of adjuvant chemotherapy in the previous 6 to 60 months and reported persistent cognitive symptoms. Participants received a 30-minute telephone consultation and were then randomized to either a 15-week, home-based intervention or to standard care.

The researchers found that the primary outcome of difference in self-reported cognitive function (Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy Cognitive Function [FACT-COG]) perceived cognitive impairment [PCI] subscale) 6 months later (P < 0.001). There was a significant difference in all FACT-COG subscales after the intervention, favoring the intervention. There were no significant differences between the groups in neuropsychological results. After the intervention there were significantly lower levels of anxiety/depression and fatigue noted in the intervention group.

"The intervention, Insight, led to improvements in cognitive symptoms compared with standard care," the authors write. "To our knowledge, this is the first large randomized controlled trial showing an improvement in self-reported cognitive function in cancer survivors, indicating that this intervention is a feasible treatment."

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

Reference

  1. Bray, VJ. Dhillon HM, Bell ML, et al. Evaluation of a Web-Based Cognitive Rehabilitation Program in Cancer Survivors Reporting Cognitive Symptoms After Chemotherapy. J Clin Oncol. 28 October 2016. DOI: 10.1200/JCO.2016.67.8201 
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