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Friday, September 19, 2014

Cognitive Defects in Multiple Sclerosis Caused in Part By Brain Processing Speed

brain processing speed and MSTrying to nail down the reason for executive deficits in multiple sclerosis can be difficult, considering the number of factors related to the condition. A team of researchers from the Kessler Foundation — led by Victoria Leavitt, PhD, who is now a part of the Manhattan Memory Center, and James Sumowski, PhD — discovered a link between executive deficits and slowed processing speed. They reported their results ahead of print in the journal Rehabilitation Psychology under the title, “Does Slowed Processing Speed Account for Executive Deficits in Multiple Sclerosis? Evidence From Neuropsychological Performance and Structural Neuroimaging.”
Executive deficits (also referred to as cognitive deficits) describe disabling symptoms that affect approximately half of multiple sclerosis patients’ quality of life. Processing speed, which is a measure of how fast the brain can intake information and decide how to respond to the information, is found to be slowed in multiple sclerosis patients. The team at Kessler Foundation was interested in a possible link between the two symptoms and compared 50 multiple sclerosis patients to 28 healthy participants with the intention of determining an effect of processing speed on executive function.

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