Verbal learning and memory after childhood stroke

J Int Neuropsychol Soc. 2004 Sep;10(5):742-52. doi: 10.1017/S1355617704105122.


Verbal learning and memory (VLM) following pediatric stroke was characterized in a cross-sectional neuropsychological and neuroimaging study of 26 subjects, aged 5 to 17, with a history of pediatric stroke and 26 age, SES, and gender matched orthopedic controls. Further comparisons were made between the VLM profiles of stroke subjects with right versus left hemisphere lesions and early (> 12 months) versus late (12 months) strokes. Overall, stroke subjects scored significantly lower than control subjects on several VLM indices (California Verbal Learning Test-Children; CVLT-C), as well as on measures of intellectual functioning (IQ) and auditory attention/working memory (Digit Span). Subgroup analyses of the stroke population found no significant differences in VLM, Digit Span, Verbal IQ or Performance IQ when left-hemisphere lesion subjects were compared to right-hemisphere lesion subjects. In contrast, early strokes were associated with significantly fewer words recalled after delay, reduced discriminability (fewer correct hits relative to false positive errors on recognition testing), and relatively worse auditory attention/working memory scores (Digit Span). These findings indicate that pediatric stroke subjects demonstrated more VLM impairment than control subjects, and early strokes were associated with greater recall and recognition deficits. In stark contrast with adult-onset stroke, both left- and right-hemisphere lesions during childhood resulted in similar VLM performance.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Age of Onset
  • Attention / physiology
  • Brain / pathology
  • Brain / physiopathology
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Demography
  • Female
  • Functional Laterality / physiology
  • Humans
  • Intelligence / physiology
  • Intelligence Tests
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods
  • Male
  • Memory*
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Stroke / classification
  • Stroke / physiopathology*
  • Verbal Learning*