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J Psychiatr Res. 1994 Nov-Dec;28(6):483-98.

Are schizophrenic men at higher risk for developmental deficits than schizophrenic women? Implications for adult neuropsychological functions.

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Psychiatric Epidemiology and Genetics, Harvard University, Brockton/West Roxbury VA Medical Center, MA 02401.


This study tested the hypothesis that schizophrenic men would be at a greater risk than schizophrenic women for exhibiting a history of developmental problems in childhood and would exhibit more neuropsychological deficits as adults. The study was a secondary analysis of data that were collected in 1981-83. The sample consisted of 49 DSM-III schizophrenic patients (57% male/43% female), who were generally in the early stages of the disorder. All subjects received a neurodevelopmental and clinical/diagnostic interview and a neuropsychological battery of tests, including measures of intelligence, abstract reasoning, memory, sustained attention, executive function, language skills, and motor ability. Latent class analysis was used to identify gender differences in subclasses of schizophrenia. The groups were then compared on neuropsychological function. Results indicated that schizophrenics with histories of early developmental problems exhibited significantly more neuropsychological dysfunction as adults than did other schizophrenics, and they were more likely to be men. Impairment in this group was evident in the areas of verbal ability, attention, abstraction, motor function, and verbal and nonverbal learning and memory, with verbal tasks being relatively more impaired.

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