The Spanish version of the modified Story Memory Technique improves learning and life satisfaction of Mexican patients with multiple sclerosis (MS), a new study suggests.
The tool, developed by the Kessler Foundation, has the potential to address the lack of cognitive rehabilitation interventions that are culturally appropriate for the diverse Hispanic U.S. population, the researchers said.
The study, “Efficacy of the Spanish modified Story Memory Technique in Mexicans with multiple sclerosis: A pilot randomized controlled trial,” was published in the journal NeuroRehabilitation.
People with MS, According to the Foundation, experience cognitive and memory problems, namely in learning new information and remembering everyday tasks. The cognitive decline seen in MS patients usually is specific and subtle, making these patients prime subjects for rehabilitation interventions that target specific cognitive functions, such as learning a new task or processing speed.
The modified Story Memory Technique (mSMT) was developed by Nancy Chiaravalloti, PhD, director of the Center for Neuropsychology and Neuroscience Research and the Center for Traumatic Brain Injury Research at Kessler Foundation. She also is research professor of physical medicine and rehabilitation at Rutgers University, New Jersey Medical School.
The mSMT is an evidence-based English-language cognitive intervention that consists of 10 sessions. It has three specific segments focused on improving the patient’s ability to learn and retain new information via imagery and context. The two final sessions of the protocol focus on applying the new skills in daily life.
Previous research showed that mSMT is effective in improving MS patients’ learning and memory performance, and that it also could make brain processing more efficient.
Now, Kessler Foundation researchers, in collaboration with the Mexican MS Foundation and the Basque Foundation for Science, in Bilbao, Spain, translated and adapted the mSMT protocol to Spanish, and assessed its effectiveness as a cognitive rehabilitation tool in Mexican patients with MS.
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