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Perioperative Research into Memory (PRiMe): Cognitive impairment following a severe burn injury and critical care admission, part 1

Watson, E. J. R., Nenadlova, K., Clancy, O. H. , Farag, M., Nordin, N. A., Nilsen, A., Mehmet, A. R. T., Al-Hindawi, A., Mandalia, S., Williams, L. M., Edginton, T. & Vizcaychipi, M. P. (2018). Perioperative Research into Memory (PRiMe): Cognitive impairment following a severe burn injury and critical care admission, part 1. Burns, doi: 10.1016/j.burns.2018.04.011


An investigation into long-term cognitive impairment and Quality of Life (QoL) after severe burns.

A proof of principle, cohort design, prospective, observational clinical study. Patients with severe burns (>15% TBSA) admitted to Burns ICU for invasive ventilation were recruited for psychocognitive assessment with a convenience sample of age and sex-matched controls. Participants completed psychological and QoL questionnaires, the Cogstate® electronic battery, Hopkins Verbal Learning, Verbal Fluency and Trail making tasks.

15 patients (11M, 4F; 41 ± 14 years; TBSA 38.4% ± 18.5) and comparators (11M, 4F; 40 ± 13 years) were recruited. Burns patients reported worse QoL (Neuro-QoL Short Form v2, patient 30.1 ± 8.2, control 38.7 ± 3.2, p = 0.0004) and cognitive function (patient composite z-score 0.01, IQR −0.11 to 0.33, control 0.13, IQR 0.47–0.73, p = 0.02). Compared to estimated premorbid FSIQ, patients dropped an equivalent of 8 IQ points (p = 0.002). Cognitive function negatively correlated with burn severity (rBaux score, p = 0.04). QoL strongly correlated with depressive symptoms (Rho = −0.67, p = 0.009) but not cognitive function.

Severe burns injuries are associated with a significant, global, cognitive deficit. Patients also report worse QoL, depression and post-traumatic stress. Perceived QoL from cognitive impairment was more closely associated with depression than cognitive impairment.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2018, Elsevier. This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license
Publisher Keywords: Severe burns; critical illness; cognitive impairment; mental health; Quality of Life
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences > Psychology
Text - Accepted Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives.

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