This study examined the effect of demographic and
clinical variables on recovery of neuropsychological
functioning after SAH. Medical condition and hospital
course, including disease severity and complications,
were recorded prospectively. Demographics including
age, sex, race/ethnicity, primary language, and years
of education were obtained via interview. Three and
12 months after the SAH, participants were invited to
complete a comprehensive neuropsychological battery
in the patient’s preferred language, English or
Spanish. Overall cognition and 7 cognitive domains
were assessed: attention, psychomotor speed,
visuospatial skills, language, verbal and visual
memory, and executive functions. Psychomotor speed
and attention recovered over time. Global mental
status 3 months after SAH was the best correlate of
neuropsychological functioning at one year. Factors
that contributed to greater cognitive impairment
after SAH included older age, anterior aneurysm
location, amount and location of blood, infarctions,
cerebral edema, worse clinical grade, male sex, and
not speaking English, but not vasospasm alone.
Findings are discussed in relation to current literature.
Shelley Peery , Ph.D., is a Clinical Neuropsychologist at Bright
Minds Institute in San Francisco, CA. She earned her doctorate
from the City University of New York. She completed
post-doctoral training and retains faculty status at NYU. Dr.
Peery teaches neuropsychology at the graduate level at Argosy
University at the San Francisco campus.