Is computer-assisted training effective in improving rehabilitative outcomes after brain injury? A case-control hospital-based study

Disabil Health J. 2014 Jul;7(3):356-60. doi: 10.1016/j.dhjo.2014.04.003. Epub 2014 Apr 19.


Background: Rehabilitation of impaired cognitive functions begins to be considered a standard component of medical care after acquired brain injury. Indeed, many evidences support the effectiveness of the two major categories of techniques, i.e. the traditional and computer-assisted ones, which are widely used in cognitive rehabilitative treatment.

Objective: Aim of this study is to evaluate the effects of pc - cognitive training in brain injury patients.

Methods: We studied 35 subjects (randomly divided into two groups), affected by traumatic or vascular brain injury, having attended from January 2010 to December 2012 the Laboratory of Robotic and Cognitive Rehabilitation of IRCCS Neurolesi of Messina. Cognitive impairment was investigated through psychometric battery, administered before (T0) and two months (T1) after the cognitive pc-training, which was performed only by the experimental group, in addition to conventional treatment. Statistical analysis was performed using Wilcoxon test with a p < 0.01.

Results: At time T0, all patients showed language deficits and cognitive alterations in visual attention and memory abilities. After the rehabilitation program we noted a global improvement in both the groups. However, at T1, the experimental group showed a greater cognitive improvement than the control group, with significant differences in nearly all the neuropsychological tests performed.

Conclusions: Our data suggest that cognitive pc-training may be a promising methodology to optimize the rehabilitation outcomes following brain injury.

Keywords: Computerized cognitive training; Recovery; Rehabilitation outcomes; Stroke; TBI.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Brain Injuries / complications
  • Brain Injuries / rehabilitation*
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Cognition Disorders / etiology
  • Cognition Disorders / rehabilitation*
  • Cognition*
  • Computer-Assisted Instruction / methods*
  • Disabled Persons / rehabilitation*
  • Female
  • Hospitals
  • Humans
  • Language Disorders / etiology
  • Language Disorders / rehabilitation*
  • Male
  • Memory Disorders / etiology
  • Memory Disorders / rehabilitation*
  • Middle Aged
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Young Adult