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Cognitive rehabilitation: Help for those recovering from a stroke or other brain injury

I almost zipped right on past this Wall Street Journal story (online subscription needed) about cognitive rehabilitation for stroke victims and others who suffer from various kinds of brain injuries.

Symptoms from these various ailments where blood is cut-off to the brain can really diminish the quality of life.

But, according to the story, there's hope for those left with memory problems or many of the other manifestations of these injuries and its through a regimen known as cognitive rehabilitation.

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Here's how the Wall Street Journal story described this type of rehab:

The treatment is based on recent discoveries about how the brain functions. Research suggests that a damaged brain can adapt by creating new pathways between cells.

MRIs, for example, show unusual areas of the brain lighting up when an impaired person is asked to perform a task during rehab, suggesting that new neurons are taking over for destroyed ones.
It concludes: "The results suggest that alterations in the allocation of brain resources can occur even in a subject many years post-severe traumatic brain injury," says Linda K. Laatsch, a University of Illinois at Chicago psychologist who conducted the MRI studies. Scientists find the reverse is true, too. Disuse can lead to deterioration of brain pathways and loss of function, researchers say.

As victims and their families search for treatment for the after-effects, this should be a resource available to check out. It's particularly valuable to baby-boomers as they age and are in need of services.

I checked Google for cognitive rehabilitation and found pages of links, including: