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Differentiation of executive and attention impairments in affective illness

Stoddart, Samuel D. R., Craddock, Nicholas John and Jones, Lisa A. 2007. Differentiation of executive and attention impairments in affective illness. Psychological Medicine 37 (11) , pp. 1613-1623. 10.1017/S0033291707000712

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Background Executive impairments have been reported in affective illness, but the influence of attention on executive performance has not been fully considered. The purpose of this study was to investigate whether executive impairments in affective illness were independent of attention impairments, and whether independent executive impairments were specific to bipolar (BP) affective illness. Method Forty-two individuals with major affective disorders [20 unipolar (UP) depression and 22 BP disorder] were compared with 40 healthy controls on measures of attention and executive function. None of the patients were currently experiencing an episode of affective illness. Results As expected, both UP and BP patient groups showed significant neuropsychological impairments relative to controls. Significant differences in performance on executive function measures were also observed between UP and BP patients, even after the influence of attention had been taken into account. These impairments were not attributable to current levels of affective symptomatology or to medication. Conclusions A single neuropsychological dissociation appears to be present between UP and BP affective illness, with BP individuals showing a specific executive deficit that is independent of attention impairment on the Hayling Sentence Completion Test (HSCT).

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Medicine
MRC Centre for Neuropsychiatric Genetics and Genomics (CNGG)
Subjects: R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISSN: 0033-2917
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 06:34

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