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Left-Hemispheric Asymmetry for Object-Based Attention: an ERP Study
Open AccessArticle

Electrophysiological Markers of Visuospatial Attention Recovery after Mild Traumatic Brain Injury

1
Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Rehabilitation (CRIR), IURDPM, CIUSSS du Centre-Sud-de-l’Île-de-Montréal, Montreal, QC H3S 1M9, Canada
2
Department of Psychology, Université de Montréal, Montreal, QC H3C 3J7, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Brain Sci. 2019, 9(12), 343; https://doi.org/10.3390/brainsci9120343
Received: 21 October 2019 / Revised: 21 November 2019 / Accepted: 22 November 2019 / Published: 27 November 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue ERP and EEG Markers of Brain Visual Attentional Processing)
Objective: Attentional problems are amongst the most commonly reported complaints following mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI), including difficulties orienting and disengaging attention, sustaining it over time, and dividing attentional resources across multiple simultaneous demands. The objective of this study was to track, using a single novel electrophysiological task, various components associated with the deployment of visuospatial selective attention. Methods: A paradigm was designed to evoke earlier visual evoked potentials (VEPs), as well as attention-related and visuocognitive ERPs. Data from 36 individuals with mTBI (19 subacute, 17 chronic) and 22 uninjured controls are presented. Postconcussion symptoms (PCS), anxiety (BAI), depression (BDI-II) and visual attention (TEA Map Search, DKEFS Trail Making Test) were also assessed. Results: Earlier VEPs (P1, N1), as well as processes related to visuospatial orientation (N2pc) and encoding in visual short-term memory (SPCN), appear comparable in mTBI and control participants. However, there appears to be a disruption in the spatiotemporal dynamics of attention (N2pc-Ptc, P2) in subacute mTBI, which recovers within six months. This is also reflected in altered neuropsychological performance (information processing speed, attentional shifting). Furthermore, orientation of attention (P3a) and working memory processes (P3b) are also affected and remain as such in the chronic post-mTBI period, in co-occurrence with persisting postconcussion symptomatology. Conclusions: This study adds original findings indicating that such a sensitive and rigorous ERP task implemented at diagnostic and follow-up levels could allow for the identification of subtle but complex brain activation and connectivity deficits that can occur following mTBI. View Full-Text
Keywords: mTBI; event-related potentials; visual–attentional processing; brain connectivity; neuropsychological measures; postconcussion symptoms mTBI; event-related potentials; visual–attentional processing; brain connectivity; neuropsychological measures; postconcussion symptoms
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Bolduc-Teasdale, J.; Jolicoeur, P.; McKerral, M. Electrophysiological Markers of Visuospatial Attention Recovery after Mild Traumatic Brain Injury. Brain Sci. 2019, 9, 343.

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