A pilot study examining effects of group-based cognitive strategy training treatment on self-reported cognitive problems, psychiatric symptoms, functioning, and compensatory strategy use in OIF/OEF combat veterans with persistent mild cognitive disorder and history of traumatic brain injury

Marilyn Huckans, Shital Pavawalla, Theresa Demadura, Michael Kolessar, Adriana Seelye, Noah Roost, Elizabeth W. Twamley, Daniel Storzbach

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

32 Scopus citations


We aimed to determine whether group-based Cognitive Strategy Training (CST) for combat veterans with mild cognitive disorder and a history of traumatic brain injury (TBI) has significant posttreatment effects on self-reported compensatory strategy usage, functioning, and psychiatric symptoms. Participants included 21 veterans returning from conflicts in Iraq or Afghanistan with a diagnosis of Cognitive Disorder, Not Otherwise Specified and a history of combat-related TBI. Participants attended 6- to 8-week structured CST groups designed to provide them training in and practice with a variety of compensatory cognitive strategies, including day planner usage. Of the participants, 16 completed pre- and posttreatment assessment measures. Following CST, participants reported significantly increased use of compensatory cognitive strategies and day planners; an increased perception that these strategies were useful to them; increased life satisfaction; and decreased depressive, memory, and cognitive symptom severity. Group-based CST is a promising intervention for veterans with mild cognitive disorder, and randomized controlled trials are required to further evaluate its efficacy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)43-60
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Rehabilitation Research and Development
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 26 2010



  • Blast injury
  • Cognitive aids
  • Cognitive rehabilitation
  • Combat veterans
  • Compensatory strategies
  • Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF)
  • Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF)
  • Postconcussive syndrome
  • Posttraumatic stress disorder
  • Traumatic brain injury

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rehabilitation

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