Neuropsychological assessments in patients with aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage, perimesencephalic SAH, and incidental aneurysms

  • Subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) is known to be associated with long-term cognitive deficits. Neurosurgical manipulation on the brain itself has been reported to have influence on neuropsychological sequelae. The following is a comparative study on perimesencephalic and aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage patients as well as elective aneurysm patients that was carried out to determine the isolated and combined impact of surgical manipulation and hemorrhage, respectively, on long-term neuropsychological outcome. Inclusion criteria were good neurological recovery at discharge (modified Rankin Scale 0 or 1) without focal neurological deficit. Standardized psychological testing covered attention, memory, executive functions, and mood. Thirteen aneurysmal SAH patients, 15 patients undergoing elective clipping, and 14 patients with perimesencephalic SAH were analyzed. Standardized neuropsychological testing and social/professional history questionnaires were performed 2 years (mean) after discharge. Memory impairment and slower cognitive processing were found in the aneurysmal and perimesencephalic SAH groups, while elective aneurysm patients showed signs of impaired attention. However, compared with norm data for age-matched healthy controls, all groups showed no significant test results. In contrast, signs of clinical depression were seen in 9/42 patients, 45 % of all patients complained of stress disorders and 55 % of patients were unable to work in their previous professions. Nearly normal neuropsychological test results on long-term follow-up in SAH patients were unexpected. However, a 50 % rate of unemployment accompanied with stress disorders and depression manifests insufficient social and workplace reintegration. Therefore, even more specific rehabilitation programs are required following inpatient treatment to attain full recovery.

  • info:eu-repo/semantics/restrictedAccess
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