This New iPad App May Help People With Schizophrenia Scientists at Cambridge University said the game improves memory and learning.

By Reuters

entrepreneur daily

This story originally appeared on Reuters

timothy muza | StockSnap.io

A "brain training" iPad game developed in Britain may improve the memory of patients with schizophrenia, helping them in their daily lives at home and at work, researchers said on Monday.

Scientists at Cambridge University said tests on a small number of patients who played the game over four weeks found they had improvements in memory and learning.

The game, "Wizard", is designed to help so-called episodic memory -- the type of memory needed to remember where you left your keys several hours ago, or to remember a few hours later where you parked your car in a multi-storey car park.

Schizophrenia is a long-term mental health condition that causes a range of psychological symptoms, ranging from changes in behavior through to hallucinations and delusions.

While some psychotic symptoms can be reasonably well treated with medication, patients often still have debilitating problems with memory and cognitive function, meaning they struggle to get back to work or stay in education.

There is increasing evidence that computer-assisted training can help people with schizophrenia overcome some of their symptoms, with better outcomes in their daily lives.

This study, published in the journal Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B, found that 22 patients who played the memory game made significantly fewer errors and needed significantly fewer attempts to remember the location of different patterns specific tests.

They also improved their scores on the Global Assessment of Functioning (GAF) scale, which doctors use to rate the social, occupational and psychological functioning of adults.

Importantly, the patients also said they enjoyed the game and were motivated to play it across the eight hours of cognitive training. The researchers said this was important, since lack of motivation is a common feature of schizophrenia.

"We need a way of treating the cognitive symptoms of schizophrenia, such as problems with episodic memory, but slow progress is being made toward developing a drug treatment," said Barbara Sahakian from the department of psychiatry at Cambridge University.

"This proof-of-concept study...demonstrates that the memory game can help where drugs have so far failed. (And) because the game is interesting, even those patients with a general lack of motivation are spurred on to continue the training."

(Reporting by Kate Kelland, editing by Angus MacSwan)

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

Editor's Pick

Related Topics

Business News

Amazon's $1 Billion Innovation Fund Is Looking to Invest in a Specific Kind of Startup

The company's Innovation Fund invests in startups that focus on robotics, artificial intelligence, machine learning, and autonomy.

Business News

Grads From This Midwestern School Are More Likely to Start a Billion Dollar Company Than Founders Who Went To Stanford, Harvard, or MIT: Study

Some surprising schools outranked Ivy League universities with the likelihood that their grads would found a unicorn.

Starting a Business

How Can You Make Sure Your Business Will Survive Anything? Try These 3 Proven Strategies

No matter how uncertain the economy is, you can survive anything as long as you prepare. Here are a few strategies to consider.

Business News

Oprah Winfrey Announces She's Leaving WeightWatchers' Board, Company Stock Plummets

The news comes just months after Winfrey admitted to using weight loss medication to aid her health journey.

Marketing

7 Ways to Create a Seamless Marketing Campaign Across All Platforms

Achieving cross-platform harmony requires strategic goal-setting, customized content optimization, and a mix of paid and organic efforts.