Cognitive training for divergent thinking in schizophrenia: A pilot study

Department of Neuropsychiatry, School of Medicine, Keio University, Tokyo, Japan.
Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry (Impact Factor: 3.69). 10/2009; 33(8):1533-6. DOI: 10.1016/j.pnpbp.2009.08.015
Source: PubMed


Individuals with schizophrenia demonstrate deficits in divergent thinking. This ability is indispensable for generating creative solutions and navigating the complexities of social interactions. In a pilot study, seventeen stable schizophrenia outpatients were randomly assigned to a training program for divergent thinking or a control program on convergent thinking. After eight weeks of training, participants in the divergent thinking program had significantly greater improvements on measures of idea fluency, negative symptoms, and interpersonal relations than did participants receiving the control program. These preliminary results suggest that interventions for divergent thinking in schizophrenia may lead to improvements in patients' social functioning.

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    • "Drill and practice studies most commonly used computerized tasks, done individually. However, there was more variety in the methods of training, for example, at least five studies used pencil-and-paper procedures [60,67,69,73,75]; though Lopez-Luengo utilized both pen-and-paper and audio] while five others used a combination of audio and visual tasks [62,63,77,78,83] to reduce the deficits. Furthermore, most studies using drill and practice methodologies (all except [61,69]) reported between-group improvements in cognition between the experimental and control groups, at least for some measures. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background The purpose of this article was to conduct a review of the types of training offered to people with schizophrenia in order to help them develop strategies to cope with or compensate for neurocognitive or sociocognitive deficits. Methods We conducted a search of the literature using keywords such as “schizophrenia”, “training”, and “cognition” with the most popular databases of peer-reviewed journals. Results We reviewed 99 controlled studies in total (though nine did not have a control condition). We found that drill and practice training is used more often to retrain neurocognitive deficits while drill and strategy training is used more frequently in the context of sociocognitive remediation. Conclusions Hypotheses are suggested to better understand those results and future research is recommended to compare drill and strategy with drill and practice training for both social and neurocognitive deficits in schizophrenia.
    Full-text · Article · May 2014 · BMC Psychiatry
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    • "Although disabled persons' employment, deinstitutionalization, and socialization were promoted by this law, there are actually many people with psychiatric illnesses, including patients with schizophrenia, who still suffer from social dysfunction. With the aim of alleviating the many difficulties that they encounter in their lives, cognitive remediation therapy for patients with schizophrenia has gradually been launched in Japan (Nemoto et al., 2009). "
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    ABSTRACT: The main aim of this study is to demonstrate the feasibility and efficacy of a Neuropsychological Educational Approach to Cognitive Remediation (NEAR) in Japan. This multi-site study used a quasi-experimental design. Fifty-one patients with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder participated. The NEAR program consisted of two 1-h computer sessions per week and an additional group meeting session lasting 30 to 60 min once a week. The subjects completed 6 months of NEAR sessions before being assessed. Moreover, taking into consideration the possible practice effect, we assessed 21 control patients twice with an interval of 6 months. We assessed cognitive function by using the Japanese version of the Brief Assessment of Cognition in Schizophrenia (BACS-J). Consequently, the NEAR group showed significant improvement in overall cognitive function, and in comparison with the control group, these findings were generally similar except for motor speed. Although the present study has its limitations, it demonstrates that the NEAR is feasible in Japan as well as it is in Western countries.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2011 · Psychiatry Research
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    • "However, in comparison with other studies of cognitive remediation, GAF scores in our sample were at the upper end of the range (e.g. [51,52]). The mean scores on cognitive test performance with available normative values (working memory tests and TMT) were within one standard deviation from the normative mean with the exception of TMT-B, which was between 1 and 2 standard deviations from the normative mean. "
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    ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to assess whether planning and problem-solving training is more effective in improving functional capacity in patients with schizophrenia than a training program addressing basic cognitive functions. Eighty-nine patients with schizophrenia were randomly assigned either to a computer assisted training of planning and problem-solving or a training of basic cognition. Outcome variables included planning and problem-solving ability as well as functional capacity, which represents a proxy measure for functional outcome. Planning and problem-solving training improved one measure of planning and problem-solving more strongly than basic cognition training, while two other measures of planning did not show a differential effect. Participants in both groups improved over time in functional capacity. There was no differential effect of the interventions on functional capacity. A differential effect of targeting specific cognitive functions on functional capacity could not be established. Small differences on cognitive outcome variables indicate a potential for differential effects. This will have to be addressed in further research including longer treatment programs and other settings. NCT00507988.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2011 · BMC Psychiatry
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