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Acta Psychiatr Scand. 2012 Oct;126(4):256-65. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0447.2012.01846.x. Epub 2012 Feb 23.

Parsing the components of the psychomotor syndrome in schizophrenia.

Author information

1
Collaborative Antwerp Psychiatric Research Institute, University of Antwerp, Belgium. lise.docx@ua.ac.be

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Catatonia, extrapyramidal signs, psychomotor slowing, and (motoric) neurological soft signs are well-known psychomotor symptoms in schizophrenia. This study aims at investigating the interrelations between these symptoms. In addition, associations between psychomotor symptoms, clinical symptoms, and cognitive functioning will be studied.

METHOD:

An extensive test battery containing psychomotor (Bush Francis Catatonia Rating Scale; St Hans Rating Scale; Salpêtrière Retardation Rating Scale; Neurological Evaluation Scale) and clinical (Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale; Calgary Depression Scale) rating scales as well as instrumental psychomotor tests (Line Copying Task; Finger Tapping Task) and cognitive tasks (Symbol Digit Substitution Test; Stroop Colour Word Test; Continuous Performance Test; Letter Number Sequencing) was administered to a sample of 124 patients with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder.

RESULTS:

Correlational analyses showed that two clusters emerge from our data: first, a psychomotor poverty cluster referring to the interrelations between catatonia, parkinsonism, psychomotor slowing, and negative symptoms; second, a cluster containing motoric neurological soft signs, which were found to be correlated with cognitive functioning.

CONCLUSION:

Psychomotor abnormalities are highly prevalent phenomena in schizophrenia that have to be considered as a heterogeneous construct. However, longitudinal and neurobiological research is needed to further explore the precise nature of the interrelations found in this study.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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