Activity interventions for cognitive problems


  • Elizabeth R. Skidmore PhD, OTR/L

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Occupational Therapy, University of Pittsburgh School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
    2. Department of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
    3. University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Rehabilitation Institute, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
    • Correspondence to: Elizabeth R. Skidmore, Department of Occupational Therapy, University of Pittsburgh, 5012 Forbes Tower, Pittsburgh, PA 15260.


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  • Dr. Skidmore affirms that she has no affiliations that she considers to be relevant and important with any organization that to her knowledge has a direct interest, particularly a financial interest, in the subject matter discussed. Such affiliations include, but are not limited to, employment by an industrial concern, ownership of stock, membership on a standing advisory council or committee, a seat on the board of directors, or being publicly associated with a company or its products.


Cancer and its life-saving treatments often result in long-term impairments in neurocognitive functions. These neurocognitive impairments are not only problematic, but they also limit the ability to perform meaningful everyday activities critical to independence in the home, school, and community. The “bottom-up” and “top-down” models inherent in many neurological rehabilitation interventions provide a gross framework for describing interventions designed to address neurocognitive functions. Activity interventions show promise for improving performance of everyday activities, as well as improving underlying neurocognitive functions. However, additional empirical examination is warranted. Future studies examining activity interventions should clearly specify the active ingredient of the intervention, and evaluate the impact of the intervention on neurocognitive as well as activity-based outcomes. Pediatr Blood Cancer 2014; 61:1743–1746. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.