Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Joseph C. Miller
COVID-19 is characterized by a respiratory syndrome with severity ranging from mild upper respiratory tract illness to severe interstitial pneumonia and acute respiratory distress syndrome. Although physical symptoms are most common in those infected with COVID-19, patients may present with several neuropsychiatric sequelae caused by direct central nervous system infection, neuroinflammation, and/or prolonged hypoxia encephalitis. Though extent literature on COVID-19 related cognitive decline is still in its infancy, it has been suggested neurological impairment is most common in those with severe symptom presentation, requiring hospitalization and among those who have experienced hypoxic events. In the current study, sixty-two healthy controls and sixty-two individuals previously infected with COVID-19 were administered the Global Neuropsychological Assessment (GNA), Hopkins Adult Reading Test, and Mental Status Exam-Telephone Version and completed a COVID-19 symptom questionnaire in a telehealth format. The GNA consists of subtests intended to measure learning and memory, attention, processing speed, language, executive functioning, and mood. Those previously infected with COVID-19 largely experienced benign symptom presentation, as only three required hospitalization and only two required intubation. Of the tests administered the two groups performances were only significantly different on the processing speed subtest of the GNA. However, multiple regression analysis revealed this difference was accounted for only by age, not COVID-19 diagnosis status. Examination of outliers in the COVID-19 group revealed those with relatively severe COVID-19 symptom presentation were not among the outliers on any GNA subtest. These results imply that individuals with a benign COVID-19 symptom presentation do not appear to be cognitively impacted as a result. These results are also promising regarding the clinical utility of the GNA as a clinical and research tool.
Raines, Jeremy M., "Assessing Neuropsychological Changes Post COVID-19 Infection Using The Global Neuropsychological Assessment" (2023). Theses and Dissertations. 5331.