There is a substantially large portion of cancer survivors who have to endure with cognitive impairments after going through chemotherapy. This cognitive impairment due to chemotherapy is called chemo fog and can increase symptoms of anxiety and depression and reduce their quality of life. These survivors have suffered enough, which is why a research team evaluated the effectiveness of a cognitive rehabilitation program for people with chemo fog. A computer program designed to improve cognitive functioning called Insight was used with participants to evaluate cognitive skills over a 15-week period. All participants in the study had underwent chemotherapy in the past 6 to 60 months. The participants were divided into two groups, one that would receive the Insight brain training and one group that would receive their usual care. The participants were all assessed at the beginning of the study, 15 weeks later, and 6 months after treatment.
At the end of the 15-week period, the group who received the cognitive rehabilitation program were found to be significantly improved in perceived cognitive ability and had fewer reports of cognitive impairments, impact on quality of life, and comments from others about their cognition! These results stayed significant at the 6 month follow up for perceived cognitive ability and cognitive impairments. At the 15-week mark, the cognitive rehabilitation program group also reported less depression, anxiety, and fatigue, and better quality of life at the 6-month mark! This research shows that there is hope for those suffering from chemo fog after going through chemotherapy! After all that cancer survivors have experienced, we hope to find an effective cognitive rehabilitation program to increase their happiness and quality of life.
Bray, V. J., Dhillon, H. M., Bell, M. L., Kabourakis, M., Fiero, M. H., Yip, D., … & Vardy, J. L. (2017). Evaluation of a web-based cognitive rehabilitation program in cancer survivors reporting cognitive symptoms after chemotherapy.