Objectives: To explore unprompted adherence to a personalized, home-based, computerized cognitive training program in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS), and to examine the impact of training on cognitive performance.
Methods: Participants were assigned to a training (n=59) or a control group (n=48). Those in the training group were instructed to train three times a week for 12 weeks. The control group received no training. All participants were evaluated with a Neuropsychological Examination (N-CPC) at baseline and at the end of the study.
Results: In the training group, 42 (71.2%) participants adhered to the training schedule and 22 (37.3%) completed the entire training regimen. In the control group, 24 (50.0%) participants agreed to be retested on the N-CPC. The training group showed a significant improvement over that shown by the control group in three memory-based cognitive abilities (general memory, visual working memory and verbal working memory). Post-hoc exploration of data from the N-CPC showed that cognitive training was also associated with increased naming speed, speed of information recall, focused attention and visuo-motor vigilance.
Conclusions: The appreciable rates of adherence and cognitive improvements observed indicate that personalized cognitive training is a practical and valuable tool to improve cognitive skills and encourage neuronal plasticity in patients with MS.