BACKGROUND: Auditory verbal hallucinations (AVHs) are a cardinal characteristic of psychosis. Recent research on the neuropsychological mechanism of AVHs has focused on source monitoring failure, but a few studies have suggested the involvement of attention, working memory, processing speed, verbal learning, memory, and executive functions. In this study we examined the neuropsychological profile of patients with AVHs, assuming that the mechanism underlying this symptom could be a dysfunction of specific cognitive domains. METHODS: A large neuropsychological battery including set-shifting, working memory, processing speed, attention, fluency, verbal learning and memory, and executive functions was administered to 90 patients with psychotic disorders and 44 healthy controls. The group of patients was divided into two groups: 46 patients with AVHs in the current episode and 44 who denied auditory hallucinations or other modalities in the current episode. AVHs were assessed with the Psychotic Symptom Rating Scales (PSYRATS); the Launay-Slade Hallucination Scale was used to measure long-term propensity to auditory verbal hallucination-like experiences (HLEs) in the sample. RESULTS: Patients showed poorer performances on all neuropsychological measures compared to the healthy controls' group. In the original dataset without missing data (n=58), patients with AVHs (n=29) presented poorer set shifting and verbal learning, higher levels of visual attention, and marginally significant poorer semantic fluency compared to patients without AVHs (n=29). In the logistic model on the multiple imputed dataset (n=90, 100 imputed datasets), lower capacity of set shifting and semantic fluency distinguished patients with AVHs from those without them. CONCLUSIONS: Patients experiencing persistent AVHs might fail to shift their attention away from the voices; poorer semantic fluency could be a secondary deficit of set-shifting failure.

The role of set-shifting in auditory verbal hallucinations

SIDDI, SARA;PETRETTO, DONATELLA RITA;PRETI, ANTONIO
2017-01-01

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Auditory verbal hallucinations (AVHs) are a cardinal characteristic of psychosis. Recent research on the neuropsychological mechanism of AVHs has focused on source monitoring failure, but a few studies have suggested the involvement of attention, working memory, processing speed, verbal learning, memory, and executive functions. In this study we examined the neuropsychological profile of patients with AVHs, assuming that the mechanism underlying this symptom could be a dysfunction of specific cognitive domains. METHODS: A large neuropsychological battery including set-shifting, working memory, processing speed, attention, fluency, verbal learning and memory, and executive functions was administered to 90 patients with psychotic disorders and 44 healthy controls. The group of patients was divided into two groups: 46 patients with AVHs in the current episode and 44 who denied auditory hallucinations or other modalities in the current episode. AVHs were assessed with the Psychotic Symptom Rating Scales (PSYRATS); the Launay-Slade Hallucination Scale was used to measure long-term propensity to auditory verbal hallucination-like experiences (HLEs) in the sample. RESULTS: Patients showed poorer performances on all neuropsychological measures compared to the healthy controls' group. In the original dataset without missing data (n=58), patients with AVHs (n=29) presented poorer set shifting and verbal learning, higher levels of visual attention, and marginally significant poorer semantic fluency compared to patients without AVHs (n=29). In the logistic model on the multiple imputed dataset (n=90, 100 imputed datasets), lower capacity of set shifting and semantic fluency distinguished patients with AVHs from those without them. CONCLUSIONS: Patients experiencing persistent AVHs might fail to shift their attention away from the voices; poorer semantic fluency could be a secondary deficit of set-shifting failure.
File in questo prodotto:
File Dimensione Formato  
Siddi e Petretto 2017.pdf

Solo gestori archivio

Tipologia: versione editoriale
Dimensione 309.91 kB
Formato Adobe PDF
309.91 kB Adobe PDF   Visualizza/Apri   Richiedi una copia

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11584/219700
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? 6
  • Scopus 16
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 15
social impact