The aim of this study was to examine cognitive performance in patients prior to bone marrow or haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (SCT) and in haematological patients who received non-myeloablative cancer therapies. A consecutive sample of 101 SCT patients and 82 haematological patients completed a neuropsychological test battery and five questionnaires assessing subjective cognitive complaints, psychological functioning, health-related quality of life and fatigue. Results were compared with normative data. Percentages of cognitively impaired patients were equally divided between groups. Most deficits were observed in visual memory, visuospatial and constructional ability and psychomotor functions. The SCT group showed a higher rate of anxiety cases and reported lower cognitive, emotional and social functioning. Results of neuropschychological testing were not associated with outcome of the questionnaires. This study showed impaired cognitive performance prior to SCT. Haematological patients treated with non-myeloablative cancer therapies proved to be a reliable reference group for longitudinal studies.

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European Journal of Cancer
Department of Psychiatry

Harder, H, van Gool, A.R, Cornelissen, J.J, Duivenvoorden, H.J, Eijkenboom, W.M.H, Barge, R.M.Y, & van den Bent, M.J. (2005). Assessment of pre-treatment cognitive performance in adult bone marrow or haematopoietic stem cell transplantation patients: A comparative study. European Journal of Cancer, 41(7), 1007–1016. doi:10.1016/j.ejca.2005.01.015