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My Brain Games, from the MS Technology Collaborative-a partnership of the National MS Society, Bayer, and Microsoft-is a new series of brain fitness games specifically for people with multiple sclerosis (MS). The free online games sharpen players' cognitive skills by testing their processing speed, attention, working memory, and task-switching ability. Players can adjust the difficulty level of each game, as well as customize the text size and colors on the screen to suit their capabilities.
Stephen S. Kirzinger, M.D., assistant professor in the department of neurology and medical director of the Multiple Sclerosis Center at the University of Louisville Medical School in Louisville, KY, was one of three healthcare professionals who served as an adviser during the game development process. He helped identify the areas of cognitive difficulty for the MS population-primarily problems with attention, organization, problem-solving, and learning and remembering information-and looked at ways that games might test those aspects.
The goal of the program is to offer MS clients a fun and interactive site where they can test the cognitive abilities and hopefully practice over time, says Dr. Kirzinger. We are hopeful that the MyBrainGames will allow individuals to show some rehabilitation over time by increasing their scores. Patients at all stages of the disease potentially could play the games.
Check out the MyBrainGames at mymsmyway.com/mybraingames .
Here are a handful of other resources for sharpening your cognition:
* Brain fitness Channel from Posit Science: bfc.positscience.com/
* Cogmed Working Memory Training For kids with ADHD: cogmed.com/cogmed/
* HappyNeuron, Inc.: happy-neuron.com/
* My Brain Trainer: mybraintrainer.com/
* Play With Your Mind: PlayWithYourMind.com
For a full listing of patient organizations, go to neurologynow.com
American Academy of Neurology Foundation's patient Web site thebrainmatters.org
American Academy of Neurology Foundation aan.com/go/foundation
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
Alzheimer's Association alz.org
Alzheimer's Disease Education and Referral Center
Alzheimer's Foundation of America
Autism Society of America
Autism Speaks, Inc.
Global and Regional Asperger Syndrome Partnership
American Brain Tumor Association
National Brain Tumor Society
United Cerebral Palsy
Citizens United for Research in Epilepsy (CURE)
National Headache Foundation
Migraine Research Foundation
Hereditary Disease Foundation
hdfoundation.org , 212-928-2121
Huntington's Disease Society of America
hydroassoc.org , 1-888-598-3789
Multiple Sclerosis Association of America
msassociation.org , 1-800-532-7667
Multiple Sclerosis Foundation
msfocus.org ; 1-800-225-6495
National Multiple Sclerosis Society
Myasthenia Gravis Foundation of America
myasthenia.org ; 1-800-541-5454
Kennedy's Disease Association
kennedysdisease.org ; 559-658-5950
Moebius Syndrome Foundation
Muscular Dystrophy Association
Spastic Paraplegia Foundation, Inc.
sp-foundation.org ; 1-877-773-4483
American Pain Foundation
American Parkinson Disease Association
International Essential Tremor Foundation
Lewy Body Dementia Association
Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research
National Ataxia Foundation
National Parkinson Foundation
parkinson.org ; 1-800-327-4545
Parkinson's Disease Foundation
Society for Progressive Supranuclear Palsy
National Sleep Foundation
American Stroke Association
Give Me Five For Stroke
Tourette Syndrome Association
Brain Injury Association of America
If you would like to know more about fibromyalgia, check out these organizations:
American College of Rheumatology
National Fibromyalgia Association
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases
The American Fibromyalgia Syndrome Association, Inc.
Cure Together (curetogether.org/Migraine ) is a Web site for patients with chronic pain and migraine that helps them track and compare health data and make informed treatment decisions. Co-founded by scientist Alexandra Carmichael, whose mother has lived with migraine for 30 years, the site is currently recruiting participants for an online study on migraine.
Carmichael is looking for 1,500 patients to report data on their symptoms, treatments, and triggers for migraine by checking off and rating symptoms and treatments on the CureTogether site. It should take 15-20 minutes to complete, and statistics for the study are posted live so you will be able to see them after completing your entry.
To learn more about the study or to participate, please visit curetogether.org/migraine or e-mail Alexandra at firstname.lastname@example.org