Symptomatic and neuropsychological components of defect states.

Schizophrenia Bulletin (Impact Factor: 8.61). 02/1985; 11(3):409-19. DOI: 10.1093/schbul/11.3.409
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The distinction between positive and negative symptoms has gained prominence in schizophrenia research, but the construct has not been unequivocally validated. The authors report preliminary findings of investigations in which symptomatic and neuropsychological assessments were conducted in a sample of 32 chronic schizophrenic inpatients. Three distinct clusters of symptoms were identified in correlative analyses. One cluster of symptoms (alogia, attentional impairment, positive formal though disorder, and bizarre behavior) appeared to reflect primarily a disorganization of though independent of current definitions of the positive/negative symptom construct. A second cluster of symptoms (affective flattening, avolition/apathy, and anhedonia) appeared to reflect predominantly blunting of affect and volition. A third cluster (delusions, hallucinations, and "breadth of psychosis") seemed to represent only the florid psychotic features. The first and (to a lesser extent) second clusters of symptoms were selectively associated with neuropsychological impairment. The patterns of neuropsychological deficits correlated with the first cluster of symptoms appeared to be consistent with a process characterized by failure in the development of a normal repertoire of cognitive abilities. It is suggested that the "defect state" may not be a monothetic construct, and that within the domain of "type II" schizophrenia, disturbances of thought may be distinguished from those of affect and motivation.

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