Evaluation of Neurotext as a memory aid for people with multiple sclerosis

Goodwin, Rachel Ann (2016) Evaluation of Neurotext as a memory aid for people with multiple sclerosis. PhD thesis, University of Nottingham.

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Objectives: Memory problems are reported in 40-60% of people with multiple sclerosis (MS), they can affect independence in activities of daily living and may limit their ability to benefit from rehabilitation. There was some evidence to support the use of NeuroPage, a memory aid service, in people with neurological conditions, but there were methodological limitations. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of the NeuroPage service for people with MS who have memory problems.

Systematic Review: A systematic review on external memory aids for people with MS was performed. Eight studies were included; one study reported a treatment effect on subjective memory functioning; one on mood. No effect was demonstrated on objective memory functioning or quality of life. It was concluded that the evidence was insufficient, and high quality trials were needed.

Methods: A multicentre, single-blind randomised controlled crossover trial design was employed. People with MS and self-reported memory problems were recruited into the trial, following referral from MS services. The intervention was ‘NeuroText’, a service that sends reminder messages to people’s mobile phones at pre-arranged times via the existing NeuroPage system. In the control condition participants received non-memory texts, containing items of interest, such as news headlines. Outcome measures were completed using postal questionnaires. t-tests were employed to compare intervention and control conditions. Semi-structured feedback interviews were performed with 25 participants.

Results: Of the 106 people referred 38 took part. They were aged 28 to 72 (mean=48, S.D.=11) and 10 were men. No significant differences between NeuroText and control were detected on the Everyday Memory Questionnaire (t =0.84, p=0.41). The number of daily diary items forgotten in the NeuroText condition was significantly less than in the control (9% vs. 31%; t=-2.8, p=0.01). Reported psychological distress in the NeuroText condition was also less than control (t=-3.83, p=0.001). Seven themes were identified from participant feedback.

Conclusions: NeuroText appears to be help people with MS to achieve their everyday tasks and improve mood, however these improvements were not reflected on the questionnaire measure of the frequency of memory problems in everyday life.

Item Type: Thesis (University of Nottingham only) (PhD)
Supervisors: Lincoln, N.B.
das Nair, Roshan
Bateman, Andrew
Thomas, S.
Keywords: Memory rehabilitation; Memory aid; Multiple sclerosis; Neuropsychological rehabilitation; RCT
Subjects: W Medicine and related subjects (NLM Classification) > WL Nervous system
Faculties/Schools: UK Campuses > Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > School of Medicine
Item ID: 32885
Depositing User: Goodwin, Rachel
Date Deposited: 19 Jul 2016 06:40
Last Modified: 20 Dec 2017 02:20
URI: https://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/32885

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