New! Sign up for our free email newsletter.
Science News
from research organizations

20 minute test determines attention and memory capacity in patients with schizophrenia

The test allows for the improvement of the daily functioning of patients

Date:
September 15, 2017
Source:
Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona
Summary:
Researchers have designed a test which in only 20 minutes can examine short-term memory capacity, mental agility and organizational capacities in patients with schizophrenia.
Share:
FULL STORY

Researchers from the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB), in collaboration with the University of Oviedo and the Biomedical Research Networking Centre in Mental Health (CIBERSAM), have designed a test which can help determine the cognitive capacities of patients with schizophrenia. The test consists of a battery of assessments chosen by the researchers which permits them, in 20 minutes or less depending on the case, to examine patients' short-term memory capacities, mental agility and also organisational capacities.

The research, which forms part of the doctoral thesis of Sílvia Zaragoza Domingo, is the result of a pioneering study lasting 6 months in which 257 professionals worked with a sample of 700 individuals representative of the population diagnosed with schizophrenia in Spain. The study, which goes by the name of EPICOG-SCH, identified a battery of four assessments in order to conduct the test.

One of the main novelties of the battery of assessments chosen by researchers and led by Silvia Zaragoza lies in the fact that, in addition to being short, they consist in tests available to doctors and psychologists experts in mental health. Moreover, the tests are available in several languages, which makes it easier to use them with patients of different origins. Another advantage is that they are easy to administer, and therefore facilitates being used by health professionals in order to assess patients with schizophrenia. The test permits health professionals to assess, study and comment on symptoms of the disorder which normally are not taken into account and which could serve to treat each case in the best possible manner.

"In schizophrenia, it is desirable for the patient to be as independent and function as best possible, although that does not always happen," explains Sílvia Zaragoza. She goes on to say that "this test allows each patient to better adapt to his life. For example, if a patient is slower mentally, but short-term memory is not affected, he or she will have more chances of leading an independent life than someone whose memory is also affected."

This battery of assessments represents a very important step towards offering patients specific examinations, which can be conducted through their regular mental health centres or private centres. After an initial examination, the clinics can also conduct a follow-up of patients and also confirm whether changes in medications worsen attention span or memory, a common complaint among patients at their routine visits.


Story Source:

Materials provided by Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Silvia Zaragoza Domingo, Julio Bobes, Maria-Paz García-Portilla, Claudia Morralla. EPICOG-SCH: A brief battery to screen cognitive impact of schizophrenia in stable outpatients. Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, 2017; 8: 7 DOI: 10.1016/j.scog.2017.03.001

Cite This Page:

Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona. "20 minute test determines attention and memory capacity in patients with schizophrenia." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 September 2017. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/09/170915095303.htm>.
Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona. (2017, September 15). 20 minute test determines attention and memory capacity in patients with schizophrenia. ScienceDaily. Retrieved May 21, 2024 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/09/170915095303.htm
Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona. "20 minute test determines attention and memory capacity in patients with schizophrenia." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/09/170915095303.htm (accessed May 21, 2024).

Explore More

from ScienceDaily

RELATED STORIES