Preserved cognitive function is associated with suicidal ideation and single suicide attempts in schizophrenia
ABSTRACT Suicide is the leading cause of death in schizophrenia. An association between suicidal behavior and both higher and lower cognitive ability in schizophrenia has been reported. To clarify this relationship, we investigated whether the relationship between suicidality and neurocognition varied according to differences in suicidal ideation and behavior.
Three hundred and ten patients with DSM-IV diagnoses of schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder were categorized based on patient and staff interviews as either non-suicide attempters, non-attempters expressing suicidal ideation, single suicide attempters, or multiple suicide attempters. These groups were compared on a neuropsychological battery examining current general cognitive ability, episodic and working memory, and attentional control.
Neuropsychological performance in those with a history of suicidal ideation (n=63), and those who had made one suicide attempt (n=48) was comparable. Together, these groups outperformed patients with no history of either suicidal behavior or ideation (n=172) on measures of IQ, episodic memory and working memory. Only differences in global cognition remained significant after controlling for between-group differences in depressive symptoms. Those who had either expressed suicidal ideation and/or made a single suicide attempt demonstrated trend level advantages in neuropsychological tests over those that had made multiple suicide attempts.
These findings support earlier evidence of an association between suicidality and neurocognitive ability in schizophrenia. Specifically, these data suggest that patients who have contemplated suicide or made a single suicide attempt have better cognitive functioning than those who have not. Suicidality in multiple attempters, who do not perform better in neurocognitive tests than those who have neither contemplated nor attempted suicide, is likely to be influenced by factors other than neurocognitive ability.
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ABSTRACT: The schizophrenic patients with high suicide risk are characterized by depression, better cognitive function, and prominent positive symptoms. However, the neurobiological basis of suicide attempts in schizophrenia is not clear. The suicide in schizophrenia is implicated in the defects in emotional process and decision-making, which are associated with prefrontal-cingulate circuit. In order to explore the possible neurobiological basis of suicide in schizophrenia, we investigated the correlation of prefrontal-cingulate circuit with suicide risk in schizophrenia via dynamic casual modelling. Participants were 33 first-episode schizophrenic patients comprising of a high suicide risk group (N = 14) and a low suicide risk group (N = 19). A comparison group of healthy controls (N = 15) were matched for age, gender and education. N-back tasking functional magnetic resonance imaging data was collected. Compared with healthy controls group, the two patients groups showed decreased task-related suppression during 2-back task state versus baseline state in the left posterior cingulate and medial prefrontal cortex; the hyper-connectivity from the left posterior cingulate cortex to the left medial prefrontal cortex existed in both schizophrenic patients groups, but hypo-connectivity in the opposite direction only existed in the schizophrenic patients group with high suicide risk. The hyper-connectivity from the left posterior cingulate cortex to the left medial prefrontal cortex may suggest that the abnormal effective connectivity was associated with risk for schizophrenia. The hypo-connectivity in the opposite direction may represent a possible correlate of increased vulnerability to suicide attempt.PLoS ONE 05/2013; 8(5):e63477. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0063477 · 3.53 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVE Developing categorical diagnoses that have biological meaning within the clinical phenotype of psychosis (schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, and bipolar I disorder with psychosis) is as important for developing targeted treatments as for nosological goals. The Bipolar and Schizophrenia Network on Intermediate Phenotypes (B-SNIP) was formed to examine a broad array of intermediate phenotypes across psychotic disorders and to test the hypothesis that intermediate phenotype characteristics are homogeneous within phenomenologically derived DSM-IV diagnoses. METHOD The consortium recruited 933 stable probands with schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, or psychotic bipolar I disorder, 1,055 of their first-degree relatives, and 459 healthy comparison subjects for clinical characterization and dense phenotyping. Clinical, psychosocial, and family characteristics were contrasted. RESULTS All proband groups showed lower psychosocial functioning than the relatives or comparison group. On average, schizophrenia probands showed more symptoms and lower psychosocial functioning than probands with psychotic bipolar disorder, but there was considerable overlap in clinical manifestations. The characteristics of schizoaffective disorder were more often similar to schizophrenia than to psychotic bipolar disorder. The rates of lifetime suicide attempts were high across all proband groups, with the highest reported frequencies in the schizoaffective and bipolar groups. Proband family lineages included both families with "pure" psychosis diagnoses and families with mixed schizophrenia-bipolar diagnoses. CONCLUSIONS Symptoms, psychosocial functioning, and familial lineage overlap across the three DSM-IV psychosis diagnoses used in B-SNIP. The comingling of psychosis diagnoses within families suggests overlapping genetic determinants across psychoses. These data provide scant evidence for distinct phenotypic clustering around traditional phenomenological diagnoses.American Journal of Psychiatry 07/2013; 170(11). DOI:10.1176/appi.ajp.2013.12101339 · 13.56 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Objective: Schizophrenia is associated with an increase in the risk of both homicide and suicide. The objectives of this study were to systematically review all published articles that examined the relation between neurocognitive deficits and suicidal or homicidal behaviours in schizophrenia, and to identify vulnerabilities in suicidal and homicidal behaviour that may share a common pathway in schizophrenia. Methods: A systematic review of the literature was performed using MEDLINE to include all studies published up to August 31, 2012. Results: Among the 1760 studies, 7 neuropsychological and 12 brain imaging studies met the selection criteria and were included in the final analysis. The neuropsychological and functional neuroimaging studies were inconclusive. The structural imaging studies reported various alterations in patients with schizophrenia and a history of homicidal behaviour, including: reduced inferior frontal and temporal cortices, increased mediodorsal white matter, and increased amygdala volumes. Patients with a history of suicidal acts showed volumetric reductions in left orbitofrontal and superior temporal cortices, while right amygdala volume was increased, though, these findings have rarely been replicated. Finally, no study has directly compared neurocognitive markers of suicidal and homicidal risk. Conclusion: These results suggest that brain alterations, in addition to those associated with schizophrenia, may predispose some patients to a higher risk of homicide or suicide in particular circumstances. Moreover, some of these alterations may be shared between homicidal and suicidal patients. However, owing to several limitations, including the small number of available studies, no firm conclusions can be drawn and further investigations are necessary.Canadian journal of psychiatry. Revue canadienne de psychiatrie 01/2014; 59(1):18-25. · 2.41 Impact Factor