Cancer Related Cognition Therapy — what does this mean?
First to clarify, memory and cognition problems are characterized by impairments in the way your brain works to help you learn, think, communicate, recall, solve problems and concentrate.
According to the American Cancer Society, “Sometimes people with cancer worry about, joke about, or become frustrated by what they describe as mental cloudiness or changes they might notice before, during, and after cancer treatment. This cloudiness or mental change is commonly referred to as chemo brain.”
Nearly 75 percent of cancer patients experience cognitive issues while undergoing treatment, ranging in symptoms and severity from patient to patient, according to the American Society of Clinical Oncology. After completing cancer treatments, 35 percent still suffer from chemo brain side effects.
Despite the name, chemo brain symptoms develop not just in chemotherapy patients, but also in those treated with radiation, hormone and immunotherapy, for brain cancer and with brain and spinal cord infections.
A Speech Language Pathologist (SLP) may also help with language and auditory processes impaired by cancer treatments–this is considered Cancer Related Cognition Therapy.
Cancer Related Cognitive Impairments include:
- Mental fogginess
- Trouble concentrating
- Forgetting things they usually have no trouble recalling
- Difficulties remembering details (names, dates, etc.)
- Trouble multi-tasking
- Taking longer to finish tasks or processing information
- Word finding difficulties
- Difficulty learning new information or tasks
What can speech therapy do?
- Provide strategies to help remember information
- Teach ways (or strategies) to help with word finding
- Teach and provide ways to help with mental flexibility and thought processing
How do I get started with cancer related cognition therapy?
Discuss your cognition symptoms and memory difficulties with your doctor. A physician referral is required for speech therapy services. Ask your physician to order “Speech Therapy (ST) evaluate and treat”. Following the evaluation, the SLP will determine the best treatment plan for you.
Contact our qualified staff at 419-678-OHIO to discuss your options for cancer related cognition therapy or speech therapy.
See also our blog on Cancer Related Dysphagia Therapy.