Social cognitive impairments in first episode psychosis.

Publication Type:

Journal Article


Schizophr Res, Volume 95, Issue 1-3, p.124-33 (2007)


Adult, Case-Control Studies, Cognition Disorders, Emotions, Female, Humans, Intelligence Tests, Intention, Male, Models, Psychological, Neuropsychological Tests, Parents, Psychiatric Status Rating Scales, Recognition (Psychology), Schizophrenia, Schizophrenic Psychology, Social Class, Social Perception, Surveys and Questionnaires, Thinking, Verbal Behavior


<p><b>BACKGROUND: </b>Social cognition is a complex phenomenon involving several distinct processes. Numerous studies have shown that individuals with schizophrenia are largely impaired on this domain of cognition. However, most have focused on a single aspect of social cognition, namely "theory of mind" and/or included patients with long standing illness.</p><p><b>OBJECTIVE: </b>The main objective of the present study was to identify social cognition deficits in first episode of schizophrenia spectrum psychosis using a case control design and a comprehensive assessment that allowed the exploration of several dimensions of this phenomenon.</p><p><b>SUBJECTS: </b>36 patients with a first episode of psychosis and 25 healthy controls participated in this study.</p><p><b>MATERIAL: </b>Measures of social cognition included the Hinting Task and the Four Factor Test of Social Intelligence.</p><p><b>RESULTS: </b>Significant group differences were found on both tasks, but the Four Factor Test of Social Intelligence revealed a stronger group effect and the effects observed remained significant once IQ was covaried. Social cognition did not show any correlations with level of symptoms.</p><p><b>CONCLUSION: </b>Social cognition deficits are present during the first episode of psychosis. These impairments do not seem to be a consequence of group differences in overall intellectual functioning and are likely to be state-independent.</p>

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