Ljiljana Pacic-Turk

, Catholic University of Croatia, Croatia
Title : Cognitive deficits in patients after cerebral aneurysm surgery


Cerebrovascular diseases are important medical and socioeconomic issue in the context of neurological diseases and represent the first leading cause of physical impairment and the third leading cause of mortality worldwide. These diseases include the brain aneurysms that may cause cognitive functioning problems. The aim of the study was to examine characteristics of visual perception and retention and verbal learning and memory in patients after cerebral aneurysm surgery. Two research problems were defined, of which the first was to identify possible deficits of visual perception and retention, numerical short-term and working memory, verbal-mechanical learning and memory (curve and learning capacity, short-term and long-term memory) and verbal-logical short-term memory in patients after cerebral aneurysm surgery. The second research problem was to examine the predictive contribution of demographic variables (gender, age, education) as well as localization and lateralization of aneurysms. 
The research presents the results of neuropsychological assessment 1-6 months after brain aneurysm surgery in the last 10 years at the Department of Neurosurgery Medical School  University of Zagreb, Clinical Hospital Center Zagreb Croatia. The results indicated the existence of visual perception and visual retention deficits and short-term verbal-logical memory deficit, while in other types of verbal learning and memory, the respondents  achieved the expected results in accordance with the norms. Gender and age proved to be significant predictors for verbal-mechanical memory capacity, and for short-term and long-term verbal-mechanical memory. Also, years of education proved to be a significant predictor of working   memory, as well as visual perception, short-term and long-term verbal-mechanical memory and verbal-logical short-term memory. Localization and lateralization of aneurysms have not been shown to be significant predictors for any type of verbal learning and memory.Age, education and lateralization have been recognized as the statistically significant predictors in immediate visual recall domain. Gender, age and lateralization have been identified as the statistically significant predictors in the long-term visual retention