Authors: Manheim LM, Halper AS, Cherney L
Title: Patient-Reported Changes in Communication After Computer-Based Script Training for Aphasia
Source: Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 2009 90(4): 623-627
Year: 2009
Research Design: Case Series

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate changes in patient-reported communication difficulty after a home-based, computer-delivered intervention designed to improve conversational skills in adults with aphasia. DESIGN: Delayed treatment design with baseline, preintervention, postintervention, and follow-up observations. SETTING: Outpatient rehabilitation. PARTICIPANTS: Twenty subjects with chronic aphasia. INTERVENTIONS: Sessions with the speech-language pathologist to develop personally relevant conversational scripts, followed by 9 weeks of intensive home practice using a computer program loaded on a laptop, and weekly monitoring visits with the speech-language pathologist. MAIN OUTCOME: Measure Communication Difficulty (CD) subscale of the Burden of Stroke Scale (BOSS). RESULTS: The intervention resulted in a statistically and clinically significant decrease of 6.79 points (P=.038) in the CD subscale of the BOSS during the intervention, maintained during the follow-up period. CONCLUSIONS: The findings of this study provide positive albeit preliminary and limited support for the use of a home-based, computer-delivered language intervention program for improving patient-reported communication outcomes in adults with chronic aphasia. Additional research will be required to examine the efficacy and effectiveness of this intervention.

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