Memory After Tumours of the CNS in Childhood (MATCCh) study: long-term memory and forgetting in paediatric brain tumour survivors

Brown, Frances Kessler (2015) Memory After Tumours of the CNS in Childhood (MATCCh) study: long-term memory and forgetting in paediatric brain tumour survivors. D Clin Psy thesis, University of Glasgow.

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Abstract

Background The literature suggests that working and long-term memory are impaired in paediatric brain tumour survivors (Robinson Fraley, Pearson, Kuttesch & Compas, 2013; Robinson et al., 2014). Survivors report difficulties remembering information they learned days before, including for school exams. Sleep and psychological problems can affect memory performance and may exacerbate memory difficulties in this population. Aims Assess learning and long-term memory in paediatric brain tumour survivors relative to healthy controls, and explore associations between memory, sleep and mood. Method A learning paradigm was used to teach verbal and visual material to an 80 percent criterion in ten young brain tumour survivors and ten matched healthy controls (sibling, cousin or best friend) aged between 11 and 24. A between-subjects design compared recall between groups at delays of 30 minutes and one week. Sleep quality (measured by Actigraphy), anxiety and depression were also assessed. Results Verbal learning was significantly impaired in brain tumour survivors relative to controls. There was very tentative evidence of increased visual forgetting in the tumour group, however definitive conclusions could not be drawn from results due to the study lacking power. Some participants had significant impairments in verbal learning or verbal and visual long-term memory, and others did not. Memory was not associated with sleep or psychological variables in the tumour group, although this may be due to the study lacking power. Discussion The variability in memory within the tumour sample emphasises the heterogeneity in the brain tumour population and the need for memory to be monitored in individuals. Education and occupational settings could offer further support to those that require it. Future research should assess memory after delays longer than 30 minutes and further explore how tumour, treatment, sleep and mood variables affect memory.

Item Type: Thesis (D Clin Psy)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: Paediatric, brain tumour, memory, controlled study
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RJ Pediatrics
Colleges/Schools: College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > Mental Health and Wellbeing
Funder's Name: UNSPECIFIED
Supervisor's Name: McMillan, Professor Thomas
Date of Award: 2015
Depositing User: Ms Frances Brown
Unique ID: glathesis:2015-6719
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 05 Oct 2015 13:31
Last Modified: 08 Oct 2015 12:09
URI: http://theses.gla.ac.uk/id/eprint/6719

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