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Using a paging system in the rehabilitation of four encephalitic patients
Brain Impairment, 7(2), 158
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Memory and executive problems following encephalitis are common yet there are few published papers on the successful rehabilitation of such patients. We recently demonstrated (Wilson, Emslie, Quirk, & Evans, 2001; Wilson, Emslie, Quirk, Evans, & Watson, 2005) that a paging system could reduce everyday memory and planning problems for people with nonprogressive brain injury. Among the 143 patients who participated in the 2001 study were 4 people who had survived encephalitis. Their results are reported here. During a 2-week baseline, the successful task achievement of our four clients ranged from 2% to 81%. Each then received a pager for 7 weeks and task achievement was documented in weeks 6 and 7. All were significantly more successful with the pager than they had been at baseline with success rates ranging from 45% to 96%. Five weeks after returning their pagers they were monitored once more. One of the encephalitic patients failed to achieve any of his target tasks, returning to baseline level, the other three dropped back a little but were still much more successful than at baseline. It is concluded that the paging system significantly reduces everyday memory and planning problems of patients with encephalitis.