Neuropsychological performance in a sample of 13–25 year olds with a history of non-psychotic major depressive disorder

Baune, Bernhard T., Czira, Maria E., Smith, Annie L., Mitchell, David, and Sinnamon, Grant (2012) Neuropsychological performance in a sample of 13–25 year olds with a history of non-psychotic major depressive disorder. Journal of Affective Disorders, 141 (2-3). pp. 441-448.

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Background: There is evidence for neuropsychological dysfunction in depression among adult and elderly participants but little research has been conducted on the neuropsychological functioning of youth with depression. The aim of the present study was to investigate the neuropsychological functioning of outpatient young participants with depression.

Methods: Computerised neuropsychological tests requiring executive functioning, working memory, attention, verbal memory and learning, planning, and visuospatial skills were carried out in a sample of 13–25 year-olds with a lifetime history of non-psychotic major depression (n = 32) and in healthy age balanced controls (n = 65). Psychiatric diagnoses were ascertained using the MINI International Neuropsychiatric Interview.

Results: Participants with current or previous major depressive disorder demonstrated impairments in executive function tasks requiring conceptual skills and set-shifting, attention and working memory. However, planning skills were found to be largely intact. Positive affect was associated to better attention, working memory and verbal learning in depressed participants, independently from gender and education.

Limitations: The results may be affected by the small sample size and heterogeneity of the sample.

Conclusion: The findings from this study indicate, and are one of the first to identify, that young subjects aged between 13 and 25, with a lifetime history of depression, have impaired executive and working memory functioning.

Item ID: 21651
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1573-2517
Keywords: depression; neuropsychology; youth; neuropsychological impairment
Date Deposited: 17 Apr 2012 05:18
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1109 Neurosciences > 110999 Neurosciences not elsewhere classified @ 100%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9201 Clinical Health (Organs, Diseases and Abnormal Conditions) > 920111 Nervous System and Disorders @ 100%
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