Background Memory loss is common in heart failure (HF) patients, but few interventions have been tested to treat it. The objective of this study was to evaluate efficacy of a cognitive training intervention, Brain Fitness, to improve memory, serum brain-derived neurotropic factor (BDNF) levels, working memory, processing speed, executive function, instrumental activities of daily living, mobility, depressive symptoms, and health-related quality of life. Methods and Results Twenty-seven HF patients were randomly assigned to Brain Fitness and health education active control interventions. Data were collected at baseline and 8 and 12 weeks. Linear mixed models analyses were completed. Patients in the Brain Fitness group were older with lower ejection fraction. At 12 weeks, a group by time interaction effect was found for serum BDNF levels (P =.011): serum BDNF levels increased among patients who completed Brain Fitness and decreased among patients who completed health education. No differences were found in memory, but a group by time interaction (P =.046) effect was found for working memory. Conclusions Findings support efficacy of Brain Fitness in improving working memory and serum BDNF levels as a biomarker of intervention response. A randomized controlled study is needed among a larger more diverse group of HF patients.
- Memory loss
- computerized cognitive training
- health-related quality of life
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine