New test helps victims of brain injury recover

Posted by ap507 at Oct 20, 2014 11:10 AM |
Dr Gerald Burgess develops assessment to help sufferers of damage to the brain

Dr Gerald Burgess from the School of Psychology has developed a dynamic new assessment for helping victims of trauma to the brain, including those suffering from progressive conditions such as dementia.

The Short Parallel Assessments of Neuropsychological Status (SPANS) has been designed to engage with patients suffering from a variety of brain injuries in order to aid in their recovery and measures the cognitive skills of individuals in a user-friendly and concise way, taking patients an estimated 35 minutes to complete.

Dr Burgess said: “With SPANS clinicians now have a broader and more reliable assessment that is even more useful than most tests for tracking changes in cognitive skills over time. Patients are now more thoroughly assessed by a test that is less taxing on them than some other tests, so that their difficulties may be better understood.”

The test is suitable to be administered by a range of healthcare professionals, including clinical or research psychologists, occupational therapists, speech and language therapists, psychiatrists and neurologists.

During the development of SPANS Dr Burgess worked with Hogrefe, the publisher, who helped in collecting data and developing SPANS to a professional standard through production and marketing efforts.

For more information about SPANS visit Hogrefe’s website.

A paper about the development and use of SPANS is available here.

Watch a video showing Dr Gerald Burgess discussing SPANS in detail below:

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