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Foundations of Cognitive Impairments: Understanding Attention

presented by Karen L. McCulloch and Martha Acosta

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Disclosure Statement:

Financial:  Karen McCulloch receives compensation from MedBridge for this course. There is no financial interest beyond the production of this course.

Non-Financial:  Karen McCulloch has no competing non-financial interests or relationships with regard to the content presented in this course.

Satisfactory completion requirements: All disciplines must complete learning assessments to be awarded credit, no minimum score required unless otherwise specified within the course.

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Accreditation Check:
This course is part of a series on cognitive impairments seen in neurologic conditions. The purpose of this course is to review attention-related issues relevant to physical therapists and other allied health staff. In particular, this course covers how to screen and identify possible attention problems, as well as how to perform testing that integrates attention into functional mobility skills.

Meet Your Instructors

Karen L. McCulloch, PT, PhD, MS, NCS

Karen L. McCulloch, PhD, PT, MS, NCS, is a Professor in Physical Therapy in the Division of Physical Therapy, Department of Allied Health Sciences, School of Medicine at University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill, where she has taught entry-level and advanced-level students in neurorehabilitation since 1993. She has served in multiple roles within the…

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Martha Acosta, PhD, PT, GCS

Dr. Acosta received her Bachelors degree in Physical Therapy from the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, Texas after receiving a Bachelors degree in Pre-Medicine from the University of Southwestern Louisiana. After working several years as a clinician, she went on to pursue a Masters degree in Healthcare Administration from Southwest Texas State University.…

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Chapters & Learning Objectives

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1. Attention Definition

This chapter answers the question, "what is attention?" The prerequisites of attention are covered, including: alert, orient, and select. Components of the brain involved in attention will also be discussed.

2. Types of Attention

In this chapter, the types of attention will be covered: sustained, focused, alternating, and divided. A case example will be discussed to show how modifications to an environment can reduce distractions and improve motor skills.

3. Dual-Task Performance: A Window on Attention

The link between dual-task performance impairments and fall risk/safety concerns will be covered in this chapter. Foundational literature in older adults will be discussed, as well as additional literature in patients with stroke, PD, and TBI.

More Courses in this Series

Foundations of Cognitive Impairments: Attention Examinations and Interventions

Presented by Karen L. McCulloch, PT, PhD, MS, NCS

Foundations of Cognitive Impairments: Attention Examinations and Interventions

Subscribe now, and access clinical education and patient education—anytime, anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts.
This course is part of a series on cognitive impairments seen in neurologic conditions. The purpose of this course is to review attention-related issues that are relevant to physical therapists and other allied health professionals. In particular, this course covers dual-task examination options and describes activities that challenge attention as a component of PT intervention.

View full course details

Cognitive Impairments: Executive Function

Presented by Karen L. McCulloch, PT, PhD, MS, NCS

Cognitive Impairments: Executive Function

Subscribe now, and access clinical education and patient education—anytime, anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts.
Part of a multiple-part series of courses on cognitive impairments seen in neurologic conditions, the purpose of this course is to review issues relevant to physical therapists related to executive function and self-awareness. Although these cognitive functions are not the direct focus of physical rehabilitation, therapists should be knowledgeable about the effects of executive dysfunction and impaired self-awareness as they relate to safety and prognosis.

View full course details

Cognitive Impairments: Memory, Screening, and Intervention

Presented by Karen L. McCulloch, PT, PhD, MS, NCS

Cognitive Impairments: Memory, Screening, and Intervention

Subscribe now, and access clinical education and patient education—anytime, anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts.
The purpose of this course is to provide an overview of the different ways that memory may be described and highlight common memory impairments that occur as a result of neurologic disease or injury. Particular emphasis will be placed on the procedural/non-procedural memory distinction as it relates to improving motor function in patients seen in rehabilitation.

View full course details

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