Toronto BNB Pilot Study

Official Title

Pilot Study of the Toronto Brief Neurocognitive Battery (BNB)


As treatments improve and patients live longer with cancer, even after it has spread to the brain, efforts to improve quality of life are growing. Neurocognitive function (thinking ability and memory) is an area of particular concern for patients with brain metastases (cancer that can spread to the brain). Although there are established tests to measure neurocognitive function, these require a face-to-face assessment and can take a long time to complete. As a result, efforts to use these tests to measure changes in neurocognitive function in patients following treatment for brain metastases have resulted in a large proportion of patients who do not return for follow-up. This has limited the ability to evaluate the impact of current treatments on neurocognitive function. This study aims to evaluate a shorter, telephone-based neurocognitive assessment tool, which would make it easier for patients to complete these tests in follow-up. If this new tool is found to reliably measure neurocognitive function, it could be used for future studies evaluating new interventions that prevent or treat neurocognitive deterioration following treatment of brain metastases. This is the first prospective study to evaluate the feasibility and reliability of a novel telephone-based brief neurocognitive assessment battery (Toronto BNB) compared with the same battery delivered face-to-face in this population. The investigators hypothesize that telephone administration of this brief neurocognitive battery will reliably evaluate neurocognitive function and improve patient ability to complete follow-up assessments.

Trial Description

Primary Outcome:

  • Evaluate feasibility of utilizing a telephone assessment in patients with brain metastases
  • Evaluate the interprocedure (telephone vs. clinic) reliability
Secondary Outcome:
  • Evaluate the change in neurocognitive function before and after WBRT using the Toronto BNB
  • Evaluate sensitivity to change (responsiveness) of the Toronto BNB (in clinic and by telephone)

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Canadian Cancer Society

These resources are provided in partnership with the Canadian Cancer Society