Alexander Leff is a Professor of Cognitive Neurology and an Honorary Consultant Neurologist at Queen Square. His main clinical and academic interest is in cognitive rehabilitation, especially in the field of acquired language disorders. Alexander is a developing mechanistic accounts of how cognitive disorders can be improved by different types of therapy, both pharmacological and behavioural, using functional and structural brain imaging.
He has developed three web-based rehabilitation tools that can be used to by therapists and patients with hemianopia, and am working on four other electronic therapy projects for patients with acquired language disorders.
At the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, Queen Square in London, he runs a specialist out-patient MDT assessment clinic for patients with hemianopia and/or higher disorders of vision.
In this session, I will concentrate on three e-therapies that cover the three stages of development (patient co-creation; clinical trial; roll out). These are designed for patients with acquired brain injury (stroke, brain tumours, traumatic brain injury) to be able to use with minimal help to improve specific aspects of their cognition (e.g. reading, understanding speech, word finding). As well as therapy elements (some of which are gamified to increase users’ engagement with the e-therapy), the apps also contain diagnostic and outcome measures, so users can see if they are improving or not.
The principles used in task-based rehahabilitation are very similar to those used in normal human learning. I think that web-based applications are a good way to make scientifically proven behavioural therapies available to suitable patients and their therapists.
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Ian Livingstone, CBE
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