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Cognitive Rehabilitation in the Twenty First Century
Battistin, L., Dam, M. & Tonin (Eds) Neurological Rehabilitation: Proceedings of the 3rd World Congress (Venice, April 2-6, 2002), 381 - 384
Year of publication:
Cognitive rehabilitation is a process whereby people with brain injury work together with health service professionals to ameliorate or alleviate problems caused by a neurological insult. As cognitive problems rarely occur in isolation, we need to address emotional, social and behavioural problems alongside the cognitive ones in rehabilitation. Models of cognition, emotion , psychosocial functioning and behaviour are all of potential value in identifying problems and helping to plan treatment. Before treatment begins, suitable goals need to be negotiated with the person, the family and rehabilitation staff. Although goals should be individualised, clinically relevant and related to everyday life, in trying to achieve the goals we may attempt to restore lost functioning, encourage anatomical reorganisation, help people to compensate for their difficulties, bypass the problems through environmental modifications or use a combination of these methods. Rehabilitation practitioners should also be aware of theories of learning and should decide how they are going to evaluate rehabilitation success. The two main messages are 1) do not be restricted by one theoretical framework as this is unlikely to address all the problems of people with brain injury and 2) it is possible to marry theory, scientific methodology and clinical relevance.