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King-Devick Test Performance and Cognitive Dysfunction after Concussion: A Pilot Eye Movement Study

Gold, Doria M; Rizzo, John-Ross; Lee, Yuen Shan Christine; Childs, Amanda; Hudson, Todd E; Martone, John; Matsuzawa, Yuka K; Fraser, Felicia; Ricker, Joseph H; Dai, Weiwei; Selesnick, Ivan; Balcer, Laura J; Galetta, Steven L; Rucker, Janet C
(1) Background: The King-Devick (KD) rapid number naming test is sensitive for concussion diagnosis, with increased test time from baseline as the outcome measure. Eye tracking during KD performance in concussed individuals shows an association between inter-saccadic interval (ISI) (the time between saccades) prolongation and prolonged testing time. This pilot study retrospectively assesses the relation between ISI prolongation during KD testing and cognitive performance in persistently-symptomatic individuals post-concussion. (2) Results: Fourteen participants (median age 34 years; 6 women) with prior neuropsychological assessment and KD testing with eye tracking were included. KD test times (72.6 ± 20.7 s) and median ISI (379.1 ± 199.1 msec) were prolonged compared to published normative values. Greater ISI prolongation was associated with lower scores for processing speed (WAIS-IV Coding, r = 0.72, p = 0.0017), attention/working memory (Trails Making A, r = -0.65, p = 0.006) (Digit Span Forward, r = 0.57, p = -0.017) (Digit Span Backward, r= -0.55, p = 0.021) (Digit Span Total, r = -0.74, p = 0.001), and executive function (Stroop Color Word Interference, r = -0.8, p = 0.0003). (3) Conclusions: This pilot study provides preliminary evidence suggesting that cognitive dysfunction may be associated with prolonged ISI and KD test times in concussion.
PMID: 34942873
ISSN: 2076-3425
CID: 5092962

Underuse of Behavioral Treatments for Headache: a Narrative Review Examining Societal and Cultural Factors

Langenbahn, Donna; Matsuzawa, Yuka; Lee, Yuen Shan Christine; Fraser, Felicia; Penzien, Donald B; Simon, Naomi M; Lipton, Richard B; Minen, Mia T
Migraine affects over 40 million Americans and is the world's second most disabling condition. As the majority of medical care for migraine occurs in primary care settings, not in neurology nor headache subspecialty practices, healthcare system interventions should focus on primary care. Though there is grade A evidence for behavioral treatment (e.g., biofeedback, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), and relaxation techniques) for migraine, these treatments are underutilized. Behavioral treatments may be a valuable alternative to opioids, which remain widely used for migraine, despite the US opioid epidemic and guidelines that recommend against them. Identifying and removing barriers to the use of headache behavioral therapy could help reduce the disability as well as the personal and social costs of migraine. These techniques will have their greatest impact if offered in primary care settings to the lower socioeconomic status groups at greatest risk for migraine. We review the societal and cultural challenges that impose barriers to optimal use of non-pharmacological treatment services. These barriers include insufficient knowledge of migraine/headache behavioral treatments and insufficient availability of clinicians trained in non-pharmacological treatment delivery; limited access in underserved communities; financial burden; and stigma associated with both headache and mental health diagnoses and treatment. For each barrier, we discuss potential approaches to minimizing its effect and thus enhancing non-pharmacological treatment utilization.Case ExampleA 25-year-old graduate student with a prior history of headaches in college is attending school in the evenings while working a full-time job. Now, his headaches have significant nausea and photophobia. They are twice weekly and are disabling enough that he is unable to complete homework assignments. He does not understand why the headaches occur on Saturdays when he pushes through all week to get through his examinations that take place on Friday evenings. He tried two different migraine preventive medications, but neither led to the 50% reduction in headache days his doctor had hoped for. His doctor had suggested cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) before initiating the medications, but he had been too busy to attend the appointments, and the challenges in finding an in-network provider proved difficult. Now with the worsening headaches, he opted for the CBT and by the fifth week had already noted improvements in his headache frequency and intensity.
PMID: 33527189
ISSN: 1525-1497
CID: 4799612

Art therapy for Parkinson's disease

Cucca, Alberto; Di Rocco, Alessandro; Acosta, Ikuko; Beheshti, Mahya; Berberian, Marygrace; Bertisch, Hilary C; Droby, Amgad; Ettinger, Tom; Hudson, Todd E; Inglese, Matilde; Jung, Yoon J; Mania, Daniella F; Quartarone, Angelo; Rizzo, John-Ross; Sharma, Kush; Feigin, Andrew; Biagioni, Milton C; Ghilardi, M Felice
OBJECTIVE:To explore the potential rehabilitative effect of art therapy and its underlying mechanisms in Parkinson's disease (PD). METHODS:Observational study of eighteen patients with PD, followed in a prospective, open-label, exploratory trial. Before and after twenty sessions of art therapy, PD patients were assessed with the UPDRS, Pegboard Test, Timed Up and Go Test (TUG), Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), Modified Fatigue Impact Scale and PROMIS-Self-Efficacy, Montreal Cognitive Assessment, Rey-Osterrieth Complex Figure Test (RCFT), Benton Visual Recognition Test (BVRT), Navon Test, Visual Search, and Stop Signal Task. Eye movements were recorded during the BVRT. Resting-state functional MRI (rs-fMRI) was also performed to assess functional connectivity (FC) changes within the dorsal attention (DAN), executive control (ECN), fronto-occipital (FOC), salience (SAL), primary and secondary visual (V1, V2) brain networks. We also tested fourteen age-matched healthy controls at baseline. RESULTS:At baseline, PD patients showed abnormal visual-cognitive functions and eye movements. Analyses of rs-fMRI showed increased functional connectivity within DAN and ECN in patients compared to controls. Following art therapy, performance improved on Navon test, eye tracking, and UPDRS scores. Rs-fMRI analysis revealed significantly increased FC levels in brain regions within V1 and V2 networks. INTERPRETATION/CONCLUSIONS:Art therapy improves overall visual-cognitive skills and visual exploration strategies as well as general motor function in patients with PD. The changes in brain connectivity highlight a functional reorganization of visual networks.
PMID: 33526323
ISSN: 1873-5126
CID: 4776032

Veterans with Gulf War Illness perceptions of management strategies

Winograd, Darren M; Sullivan, Nicole L; Thien, Scott R; Pigeon, Wilfred R; Litke, David R; Helmer, Drew A; Rath, Joseph; Lu, Shou-En; McAndrew, Lisa M
AIMS/OBJECTIVE:Gulf War Illness (GWI) is a prevalent and disabling condition characterized by persistent physical symptoms. Clinical practice guidelines recommend self-management to reduce the disability from GWI. This study evaluated which GWI self-management strategies patients currently utilize and view as most effective and ineffective. MATERIALS AND METHODS/METHODS:Data were collected from 267 Veterans during the baseline assessment of a randomized clinical trial for GWI. Respondents answered 3 open-ended questions regarding which self-management strategies they use, view as effective, and view as ineffective. Response themes were coded, and code frequencies were analyzed. KEY FINDINGS/RESULTS:Response frequencies varied across questions (in-use: n = 578; effective: n = 470; ineffective: n = 297). Healthcare use was the most commonly used management strategy (38.6% of 578), followed by lifestyle changes (28.5% of 578), positive coping (13% of 578), and avoidance (13.7% of 578). When asked about effective strategies, healthcare use (25.9% of 470), lifestyle change (35.7% of 470), and positive coping (17.4% of 470) were identified. Avoidance was frequently identified as ineffective (20.2% of 297 codes), as was invalidating experiences (14.1% of 297) and negative coping (10.4% of 297). SIGNIFICANCE/CONCLUSIONS:Patients with GWI use a variety of self-management strategies, many of which are consistent with clinical practice guidelines for treating GWI, including lifestyle change and non-pharmacological strategies. This suggests opportunities for providers to encourage effective self-management approaches that patients want to use.
PMID: 33592197
ISSN: 1879-0631
CID: 4786692

Evaluating the Cross-Sectional and Longitudinal Relationships Predicting Suicidal Ideation Following Traumatic Brain Injury

Awan, Nabil; DiSanto, Dominic; Juengst, Shannon B; Kumar, Raj G; Bertisch, Hilary; Niemeier, Janet; Fann, Jesse R; Kesinger, Matthew R; Sperry, Jason; Wagner, Amy K
OBJECTIVE:Characterize relationships among substance misuse, depression, employment, and suicidal ideation (SI) following moderate to severe traumatic brain injury (TBI). DESIGN/METHODS:Prospective cohort study. SETTING/METHODS:Inpatient rehabilitation centers with telephone follow-up; level I/II trauma centers in the United States. PARTICIPANTS/METHODS:Individuals with moderate to severe TBI with data in both the National Trauma Data Bank and the Traumatic Brain Injury Model Systems National Database, aged 18 to 59 years, with SI data at year 1 or year 2 postinjury (N = 1377). MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE/METHODS:Primary outcome of SI, with secondary employment, substance misuse, and depression outcomes at years 1 and 2 postinjury. RESULTS:Cross-lagged structural equation modeling analysis showed that year 1 unemployment and substance misuse were associated with a higher prevalence of year 1 depression. Depression was associated with concurrent SI at years 1 and 2. Older adults and women had a greater likelihood of year 1 depression. More severe overall injury (injury severity score) was associated with a greater likelihood of year 1 SI, and year 1 SI was associated with a greater likelihood of year 2 SI. CONCLUSIONS:Substance misuse, unemployment, depression, and greater extracranial injury burden independently contributed to year 1 SI; in turn, year 1 SI and year 2 depression contributed to year 2 SI. Older age and female sex were associated with year 1 depression. Understanding and mitigating these risk factors are crucial for effectively managing post-TBI SI to prevent postinjury suicide.
PMID: 32769828
ISSN: 1550-509x
CID: 4764702

Quantitative Macromolecular Proton Fraction Mapping Reveals Altered Cortical Myelin Profile in Schizophrenia Spectrum Disorders

Sui, Yu Veronica; Bertisch, Hilary; Lee, Hong-Hsi; Storey, Pippa; Babb, James S; Goff, Donald C; Samsonov, Alexey; Lazar, Mariana
Myelin abnormalities have been reported in schizophrenia spectrum disorders (SSD) in white matter. However, in vivo examinations of cortical myeloarchitecture in SSD, especially those using quantitative measures, are limited. Here, we employed macromolecular proton fraction (MPF) obtained from quantitative magnetization transfer imaging to characterize intracortical myelin organization in 30 SSD patients versus 34 healthy control (HC) participants. We constructed cortical myelin profiles by extracting MPF values at various cortical depths and quantified their shape using a nonlinearity index (NLI). To delineate the association of illness duration with myelin changes, SSD patients were further divided into 3 duration groups. Between-group comparisons revealed reduced NLI in the SSD group with the longest illness duration (>5.5 years) compared with HC predominantly in bilateral prefrontal areas. Within the SSD group, cortical NLI decreased with disease duration and was positively associated with a measure of spatial working memory capacity as well as with cortical thickness (CT). Layer-specific analyses suggested that NLI decreases in the long-duration SSD group may arise in part from significantly increased MPF values in the midcortical layers. The current study reveals cortical myelin profile changes in SSD with illness progression, which may reflect an abnormal compensatory mechanism of the disorder.
PMID: 34296161
ISSN: 2632-7376
CID: 4948622

The effects of neuroplasticity-based auditory information processing remediation in adults with chronic traumatic brain injury

Voelbel, Gerald T; Lindsey, Hannah M; Mercuri, Giulia; Bushnik, Tamara; Rath, Joseph
BACKGROUND:Adults with chronic traumatic brain injury (TBI) may experience long-term deficits in multiple cognitive domains. Higher-order functions, such as verbal memory, are impacted by deficits in the ability to acquire verbal information. OBJECTIVE:This study investigated the effects of a neuroplasticity-based computerized cognitive remediation program for auditory information processing in adults with a chronic TBI. METHODS:Forty-eight adults with TBI were randomly assigned to an intervention or control group. Both groups underwent a neuropsychological assessment at baseline and post-training. The Intervention group received 40 one-hour cognitive training sessions with the Brain Fitness Program. RESULTS:The intervention group improved in performance on measures of the Woodcock-Johnson-III Understanding Directions subtest and Trail Making Test Part-A. They also reported improvement on the cognitive domain of the Cognitive Self-Report Questionnaire. CONCLUSIONS:The present study demonstrated that a neuroplasticity-based computerized cognitive remediation program may improve objective and subjective cognitive function in adults with TBI several years post-injury.
PMID: 34420987
ISSN: 1878-6448
CID: 5026582

Interrelationships Between Post-TBI Employment and Substance Abuse: A Cross-lagged Structural Equation Modeling Analysis

Awan, Nabil; DiSanto, Dominic; Juengst, Shannon B; Kumar, Raj G; Bertisch, Hilary; Niemeier, Janet; Fann, Jesse R; Sperry, Jason; Wagner, Amy K
OBJECTIVE:To describe the interrelationship of postinjury employment and substance abuse (SA) among individuals with traumatic brain injury. DESIGN/METHODS:Structural equation model (SEM) and logistic regression analytic approach using a merged database of the National Trauma Data Bank (NTDB) and Traumatic Brain Injury Model Systems (TBIMS) National Database, with acute care and rehabilitation hospitalization data and 1, 2, and 5 year follow-up data. SETTING/METHODS:United States Level I/II trauma centers and inpatient rehabilitation centers with telephone follow-up. PARTICIPANTS/METHODS:Individuals in the TBIMS National Database successfully matched to their NTDB data, aged 18-59 years, with trauma severity, age, sex, employment, and SA data at 1, 2, and/or 5 years postinjury (N=2890). INTERVENTIONS/METHODS:Not applicable. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE/METHODS:Employment status (employed/unemployed) and SA (present/absent) at year 1, year 2, and year 5 postinjury. RESULTS:=0.161; all P<.100). Despite associations of preinjury unemployment with higher preinjury SA, postinjury employment at year 1 predicted SA at year 2 (β=0.118; P=.028). Employment and SA during the previous follow-up period predicted subsequent employment and SA, respectively. CONCLUSIONS:Employment and SA have unique longitudinal interrelationships and are additionally influenced by age, sex, and ISS. The present work suggests the need for more research on causal, confounding, and mediating factors and appropriate screening and intervention tools that minimize SA and facilitate successful employment-related outcomes.
PMID: 31821796
ISSN: 1532-821x
CID: 4334652

Existential-Humanistic and Relational Psychotherapy During COVID-19 With Patients With Preexisting Medical Conditions

Gordon, Robert M.; Dahan, Jacqueline Fine; Wolfson, Joanna B.; Fults, Erin; Lee, Yuen Shan Christine; Smith-Wexler, Lucia; Liberta, Taylor A.; McGiffin, Jed N.
ISSN: 0022-1678
CID: 4730322

Coping with Medically Unexplained Physical Symptoms: the Role of Illness Beliefs and Behaviors

Sullivan, Nicole; Phillips, L Alison; Pigeon, Wilfred R; Quigley, Karen S; Graff, Fiona; Litke, David R; Helmer, Drew A; Rath, Joseph F; McAndrew, Lisa M
BACKGROUND:Medically unexplained syndromes (MUS) are both prevalent and disabling. While illness beliefs and behaviors are thought to maintain MUS-related disability, little is known about which specific behavioral responses to MUS are related to disability or the way in which beliefs and behaviors interact to impact functioning. The purpose of the present study was to examine the relationship between illness beliefs and disability among patients with MUS, and assess the extent to which behaviors mediate this relationship. METHODS:The study examined data from the baseline assessment of a multi-site randomized controlled trial (RCT). Participants were 248 veterans with MUS. Illness beliefs, behavioral responses to illness, and disability were assessed through self-report questionnaire. Data were analyzed using mediation analysis. RESULTS:Threat-related beliefs predicted greater disability through decreased activity and increased practical support seeking. Protective beliefs predicted less disability through reductions in all-or-nothing behavior and limiting behavior. CONCLUSIONS:These outcomes suggest that all-or-nothing behavior, limiting behavior, and practical support seeking are important in the perpetuation of disability among those with MUS. This has implications for improving MUS treatment by highlighting potential treatment targets. TRIAL REGISTRATION/ Identifier: NCT02161133.
PMID: 31701389
ISSN: 1532-7558
CID: 4173122