At the ABIL conference ‘Technological innovation – improving life after brain injury’ in 2019 https://www.abil.co.uk/abil-conference-news-for-2019/ PhD student Tom Langford and clinical psychologist Dr. Catherine Doogan from the Neurotherapeutics Group at University College London demonstrated iReadMore – a therapy for acquired reading Impairments.
This has now been released as a new therapy app to help people with an acquired reading impairment (alexia) or aphasia due to brain injury (such as stroke) or neurodegenerative disorder (such as dementia or primary progressive aphasia).
The app has been co-designed by people with aphasia to make it widely accessible, engaging and easy to use at home. The therapy trains word reading ability using repeated mass practice of matching written words with spoken words and pictures. Regular reading tests and feedback graphs allow users to track their own progress. The therapy adapts to each user’s reading abilities to keep the therapy relevant and challenging. This also means it is suitable for people with different severities or types of acquired reading impairment.
The therapy is evidence-based including a randomised trial which found the therapy significantly improved reading accuracy for people with post-stroke aphasia who completed 34 hours of practise (Woodhead et al., 2018). This treatment effect was still significant 3 months after participants had stopped using the therapy.
iReadMore is available now on the Google Play Store (for Android phones and tablets) and will be released on the Apple App Store in April 2021. The app costs £5 a month to use after a free 7-day trial period.
Contact by email at [email protected] or visit https://www.ucl.ac.uk/icn/research/research-groups/neurotherapeutics/therapy-apps/ireadmore-app to find out more.