HandTutor Aims to Optimize Cognitive Performance for TBI Victims
Elaine Sanchez reported in a Jan.12 news story for the American Forces Press Service Jan 15, 2012 in a report for the Office of Health and Safety about the work at the San Antonio, Texas Military Medical Center. It is aimed at finding the best treatment for veterans experiencing traumatic brain injury symptoms as much as two years after their injuries.
A study is being conducted by a team at the San Antonio Military Medical Center where they are trying out cognitive rehabilitation therapy to improve chronic, mild symptoms of traumatic brain injuries.
Sanchez reported the Study of Cognitive Rehabilitation Effectiveness trial, will look for the best treatment methodology for combat veterans who experience symptoms from three months to two years after their injuries.
Douglas B. Cooper, the study’s leader and a clinical neuropsychologist for the medical center’s Traumatic Brain Injury Service, said they have various ways of helping a TBI patient in the first few days following a concussion. However, there are fewer good interventions at their disposal six months, a year, or two years afterward according to her article. Cooper is the director of the Military Brain Injury Rehabilitation Research Consortium.
Cooper and his colleagues will treat 160 patients in 6 week cycles during a period of 2 to 3 years, using interventions that may include individual appointments,computer treatments, group sessions, or behavioral health. Her article says a DoD database shows that more than 202,000 members of the military suffered a traumatic brain injury between the years 2000 and 2010 while serving in Iraq or Afghanistan.
The HANDTUTOR improves fine motor, sensory and cognitive impairments through intensive active exercises with augmented feedback.
The newly developed HANDTUTOR and its sister devices (ARMTUTOR, LEGTUTOR, 3DTUTOR) have become a key system in neuromuscular rehabilitation and physical and occupational therapy. These innovative devices implement an impairment based exercise program with augmented feedback and encourage motor learning through intensive active exercises. Manual therapy is the provision of exercise practice by an occupational and physical therapist. As the HANDTUTOR, ARMTUTOR, LEGTUTOR and 3DTUTOR allow the PT and OT to customize the exercises, the patient is given motivating tasks through computer games with biofeedback that give them the correct dose of manual therapy. This means that the Parkinson’s, stroke, CP or TBI patient is given exercises that are challenging and motivating and allow for repetitive training tailored to the patient’s performance.
Even patients with severe movement dysfunction can benefit from intensive exercise practice as the TUTOR system picks up even small angles of joint movement. The TUTOR system also allows the OT and PT to make objective reports and evaluations on the patient’s movement ability so his progress can be maintained and shown to both himself and his family. This is also a strong motivation to carry on training and improve movement and functional everyday living ability. The HANDTUTOR and ARMTUTOR are a major part of the rehabilitation program of leading U.S. and foreign hospitals. The TUTORS are also used in clinics and at home care supported by telerehabilitation. See WWW.HANDTUTOR.COM for more information.