The aim of this study was to investigate the nature of deficits in executive function among a Saudi sample of schizophrenic patients. It also aimed to examine the association between symptoms severity and impairments in executive function. Cross-sectional method was used in this study where cognitive performances of schizophrenia subjects were compared with normal controls (n=40 vs. n=30; M=32.13 years, SD=8.94) by using three neuropsychological tests that are usually used to measure executive functions; the Rey Complex Figure Test (RCFT), the Arabic Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test (ARAVLT), and STROOP Color-Word Test. In addition, the Positive and Negative Symptom Scale (PANSS) was used with the schizophrenia patients to assess the symptoms severity. The schizophrenia patient groups showed significant impairments in measures of executive functions, verbal and visual immediate and delayed memory, as well as the speed of information and visual-spatial skills. Moreover, the results suggest the relationship between the schizophrenia symptoms (positive and negative) and the performances on the neuropsychological tests were almost similar. Both positive and negative symptoms were predicted by impairments in executive functions, but the relationship between the lower scores in measures of executive functions, and symptoms severity seems to be complex and needs further research.
Keywords:Cognitive functions, executive deficits, neuropsychology, schizophrenia
أثر مرض الفصام على بعض الوظائف التنفيذية: عينة من الذكور السعوديين
Bushra Mohammed Muhanna Alzaher
Mohsen Ali Abdullah Alhomoud
Ministry of Health || Eastern Province || Saudi Arabia