Cognitive fatigue (CF) is commonly reported by individuals who experience persistent postconcussive symptoms following mild TBI (mTBI). CF is generally assessed via self-report scales, although objective measures have also been used with cognitively demanding tasks such as the Paced Auditory Serial Addition Test (PASAT). Performance on this task has been used to assess CF among various neurologic populations, but its application within the mTBI population has been limited. This study aimed to examine CF in a sample of Veterans who served in the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan and who sustained multiple mTBIs versus deployed controls (DC). Participants underwent neuropsychological testing, including the PASAT, as part of a larger prospective study. CF was defined as a decrease in the number of correct responses from first to second half of each PASAT trial. A three-way mixed ANOVA revealed a significant halves x trial interaction (F (3, 177) = 2.73, p < .05). Post-hoc comparisons demonstrated the number of correct scores significantly dropped across all four trials in the mTBI group (p < .05) versus only during trial 2 for DCs (p < .05). Results suggest that the mTBI group expressed CF before DCs and under less cognitive load on the PASAT.
|First Author||Alex J. Cook|
|Second Author||Brett Parmenter|
|Third Author||Kathleen F. Pagulayan|
|Fourth Author||Holly K. Rau|
|Fifth Author||Emma Onstad-Hawes|