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J Clin Exp Neuropsychol. 1992 Sep;14(5):687-706.

The subcortical dysfunction hypothesis of memory deficits in depression: neuropsychological validation in a subgroup of patients.

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  • 1San Diego Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

Abstract

The subcortical dysfunction hypothesis of verbal learning and memory deficits in depression was evaluated by comparing the memory test profiles of unipolar depressives (n = 40) and bipolar depressives (n = 9) with those of patients with a prototypical subcortical dementia (Huntington's disease, HD), patients with a prototypical cortical dementia (Alzheimer's disease, AD), and normal controls. In a discriminant function analysis that well-differentiated the HD, AD, and normal subjects, it was found that 28.6% of the depressed patients were classified as HD patients (DEP-HD subjects), 49.0% were classified as normals (DEP-N subjects), none were classified as AD patients, and 22.4% were not well-classified. The DEP-HD group closely resembled the HD group on additional indices of verbal learning and memory, and differed from the DEP-N group, which strongly resembled the normal control group. DEP-N patients also performed significantly better than DEP-HD patients on a number of other neuropsychological tests (e.g., WAIS-R Digit Symbol, category fluency, Trail Making Test Part B). The findings provide support for the subcortical dysfunction hypothesis, but only for a subgroup of depressed patients. Implications for differentiating depressive "pseudodementia" from AD are discussed.

PMID:
1474139
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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