Emotions After Brain Injury: The Recap

October 20, 2021

Emotions After Brain Injury: The Recap


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OVERVIEW: Pete and Deb chit chat

EPISODE SUMMARY: In this episode of NOGGINS & NEURONS: Brain Injury Recovery Simplified, Pete and Deb talk about what we learned about from Drs. Zupan and Neumann. We covered:

  • The new FACES app release information and understanding who should use the app, which is recommended for academic & clinical use. This bothers Pete and Deb sheds a little light on the need for some training. All is not lost!
  • Several quotes from the podcast:
    • Dr. Zupan talking about initial recovery experiences following brain injury, missing the opportunity to notice and address deficits in emotions, subsequent problems that appear and the need for a better discharge plan
    • Cognition, emotions, prioritizing intervention, lack of physician knowledge around TBI symptoms, and the need for a better system in the U. S. at least
    • Inability or difficulty identifying emotions, physiological responses and learning to identify emotions following brain injury
    • Facial recognition training, facial expression software, micro-expressions and watching movies
  • Addressing the higher level cognitive/emotion skills at the onset of brain injury as a means of lower-level skills healing
  • Negative attribution when assessing the emotions of others, family dynamics and stress around meeting the needs of all

In two previous episodes Emotion Perception After TBI/Stroke w/ Drs. Zupan & Neumann announced to the world on our show that they'll have a new free app out soon to help folks conquer Alexithymia. Here is some more info on that app:

The FACES app is an App version of  the facial affect recognition intervention that we tested and has the highest strongest level of evidence for treating facial affect recognition deficits after TBI. I think we talked about it on your program, but if you think it would help, you  could include some version of the below info.  That said, anyone will be able to download the app, it’s just not intended to be self-delivered.  Hope this helps!

The FACES App: 

  • What is it?:  It is a therapeutic program consists of exercises intended to help teach individuals who have problems with emotion perception to better recognize others’ emotions--- to be able to identify and relate to happy, sad, angry, and fearful facial expressions in others. This is an evidence-based approach (Neumann et al, 2015) and has been deemed a practice standard (Cicerone et al 2019) for treating emotion perception deficits in individuals with neurological disorders.

Neumann, D., Babbage, D., Zupan, B. and Willer, B. (2015). A Randomized controlled trial of emotion recognition training after traumatic brain injury. Journal of Head Trauma Rehabilitation. 30 (3): E12-E23 May/ June 2015 doi:10.3109/02699052.2014.901560

Cicerone, K. D., Goldin, Y., Ganci, K., Rosenbaum, A., Wethe, J. V., Langenbahn, D. M., Malec, J. F., Bergquist, T. F., Kingsley, K., & Nagele, D. (2019). Evidence-based cognitive rehabilitation: systematic review of the literature from 2009 through 2014. Archives of physical medicine and rehabilitation, 100(8), 1515-1533.

  • Who is it for?: Clinicians treating individuals with neurological disorders who have emotion perception deficits
  • Intended Delivery Method: This intervention was created as a clinical tool for therapists and healthcare professionals to use as a resource when treating patients who have emotion perception problems.  It is not intended for patients to use on their own or to be delivered by a care-partner or family member, as that approach has not been tested or validated by research.

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