Research Project 1: Effects of Aerobic Exercise on Cognition and Mood Following TBI
This study will address the following aims:
- Determine the efficacy of aerobic exercise for improving cognition and mood in individuals with TBI
- Examine the role of BDNF as a mediator of response to exercise
- Evaluate the effect of post-TBI exercise on participation and on life satisfaction
- Explore personal and injury characteristics that mediate effectiveness of aerobic exercise in individuals with TBI
This study is needed, as cognitive and mood problems are encountered post injury by large numbers of people with TBI, and effective treatments are few. Although aerobic exercise has been clearly shown to be useful in improving both cognitive and emotional functioning in people with a wide variety of chronic conditions and in those with no disability, these effects have not yet been evaluated in the TBI population. Further, the role of BDNF as a mediator of response to exercise is suggested in animal models, but also has not yet been explored in people with TBI.
This study is a randomized controlled trial, using a crossover design with a wait-list control. Participants will be randomized into one of two conditions: Group A - immediate 8 weeks of exercise intervention followed by 16 weeks of monitoring, or Group B - 8 weeks of monitoring followed by 16 weeks of intervention. Participants will be accessed into the study on the basis of rolling admissions. The classic crossover design has been modified to allow us to compare the effects of 8 versus 16 weeks of exercise; this provides a means of evaluating the effect of the intervention on all outcome measures, using participants as their own controls and analyzing between-group differences. In addition, the participants in Group B will serve as their own controls to determine if another 8 weeks of exercise, for a total of 16 weeks, is necessary for cognitive/mood improvements. The sample size is 150 people, with 112 being expected to finish all points of assessment.
IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN EXPLORING PARTICIPATION IN THIS PROGRAM, CONTACT INFORMATION IS PROVIDED AT THE REHABILITATION TRIALS SECTION OF THIS WEB SITE.