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Aerobic Exercise Boosts Memory in Patients

Update Date: Nov 04, 2013 11:32 AM EST

People suffering from multiple sclerosis (MS) may benefit from aerobic exercises as it helps boosting memory, a new study finds.

Around 50 percent of individuals suffering from MS are affected by memory deficits. Despite the commonness of this symptom, an effective pharmacological treatment is still expected in the near future.

Dr. Victoria Leavitt who is a research scientist in Neuropsychology and Neuroscience Research at Kessler Foundation said in a press release that aerobic exercise may be the first effective treatment for patients of MS suffering from memory problems.

She also said that aerobic exercise is one effective measure that is readily available and a big plus point is the lack of side effects.

Two patients suffering from MS with memory deficits were the part of the study who were randomized to non-aerobic and aerobic conditions.

Later, follow-up and baseline measurements were recoded after and before the treatment procedure of half an hour exercise session. The half an hour exercise session comprised exercises 3 times per week for 3 months. These data were recorded by high-resolution MRI, fMRI and memory assessment.

In the results, more than 15 per cent of increment was recorded in hippocampal volume. Around 53 per cent increase in memory was also recorded.

On the contrary, non-aerobic exercise resulted in minimal change in hippocampal volume and expectedly no changes in the memory and functional connectivity were recorded.

The study is published in the journal Neurocase: The Neural Basis of Cognition.

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