Cognitive Gains and Losses of Patients With Alzheimer's Disease During Frequent Practice This longitudinal study of two patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD), on 12 experimental tasks, was designed to identify a measure of cognitive decline in AD patients that would be sensitive to change over short periods (weeks), resistant to practice (repeated testing over a few weeks), and predictive of change over ... Supplement Article
Supplement Article  |   November 01, 1995
Cognitive Gains and Losses of Patients With Alzheimer's Disease During Frequent Practice
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Argye Elizabeth Hillis
    Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and The Department of Cognitive Science
  • Lisa Benzing
    Johns Hopkins University Department of Cognitive Science
  • Cathy Epstein
    Johns Hopkins University Department of Cognitive Science
  • Constantine Lyketsos
    Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry
  • Contact author: Argye Elizabeth Hillis, MD, Department of Medicine, Physicians' Pavilion East, Suite 203, Greater Baltimore Medical Center, 6565 North Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21204
Article Information
Special Populations / Older Adults & Aging / Attention, Memory & Executive Functions / Supplement: Clinical Aphasiology Conference Supplement
Supplement Article   |   November 01, 1995
Cognitive Gains and Losses of Patients With Alzheimer's Disease During Frequent Practice
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, November 1995, Vol. 4, 152-158. doi:10.1044/1058-0360.0404.152
 
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, November 1995, Vol. 4, 152-158. doi:10.1044/1058-0360.0404.152

This longitudinal study of two patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD), on 12 experimental tasks, was designed to identify a measure of cognitive decline in AD patients that would be sensitive to change over short periods (weeks), resistant to practice (repeated testing over a few weeks), and predictive of change over longer periods on standardized tests. During the periods of frequent testing, both patients improved on most tasks, but performance on the tasks of spelling words and spelling pseudowords declined in both patients during periods when they deteriorated on standardized testing. It is concluded that simple spelling tasks may provide a good baseline of the rate of cognitive decline to identify effects of intervention, at least in some AD patients.

Acknowledgments
The research reported in this paper was supported by NIH grant (NINCD) ROl 19330 and by a Medical Student Scholarship from the Hartford Foundation/ American Federation on Aging Research. The authors gratefully acknowledge this support. We are also grateful to CCS and LAT for their cheerful participation in our studies and to two anonymous reviewers for helpful comments on an earlier version of the paper.
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