The effect of methylphenidate on attention in acquired brain injury as recorded by useful field of view

Samir Al-Adawi*, Ron Calvanio, Atsu S.S. Dorvlo, Russell E. Costa, Jennifer J. Mello, Charlie C. Huynh, Mrugeshkumar K. Shah, Heechin Chae, David T. Burke

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives: To assess the ability of the Useful Field of View (UFOV) test to measure change in attention of patients with acquired brain injury (ABI) when given methylphenidate in an inpatient rehabilitation unit. Design: This study reviewed data from consecutive patients who were given methylphenidate while being monitored for visual processing speed, divided attention, and selective attention with the UFOV test. Changes in UFOV scores were also compared with changes in Functional Impairment Measures (FIM). Patients: A series of 16 patients diagnosed with traumatic brain injury (n = 12) and subarachnoid hemorrhage (n = 4) were followed before and after taking methylphenidate, as a part of treatment for clinically identified attentional deficit. Results: The introduction of methylphenidate correlated with an improvement in processing speed loss, divided attention loss, and selective attention loss on the UFOV test. Methylphenidate use was further correlated with improvement on FIM Cognition and FIM Activity of Daily Living subscales. Conclusions: Methylphenidate use, in an inpatient population of patients with ABI, resulted in a significant improvement in attention and divided attention, which can be measured by the UFOV. This change in attentional ability seems to correlate with improvement in the cognitive and the Activity of Daily Living subscales of the FIM.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-72
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Applied Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2005


  • Acquired brain injury
  • Methylphenidate
  • Subarachanoid hemorrhage
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Useful Field of View

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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