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Cognitive Symptoms of Schizophrenia

Cognitive symptoms

Cognitive symptoms are subtle and are often detected only when neuropsychological tests are performed. They include the following:

  • poor "executive functioning" (the ability to absorb and interpret information and make decisions based on that information),
  • inability to sustain attention, and
  • problems with "working memory" (the ability to keep recently learned information in mind and use it right away)

Cognitive impairments often interfere with the patient's ability to lead a normal life and earn a living. They can cause great emotional distress.

Recommended Related to Schizophrenia

Schizophrenia and Relationships

Penny Frese, PhD, was studying fine arts at Ohio University when she met her future husband. They saw each other for several months, and she noticed he avoided talking about anything personal. "We took a walk in a park, and it was toward the end of summer -- a gorgeous, beautiful day. I confronted him about not being totally honest … and he said he had had a 'schizophrenic break.'" For some couples, that might have been the end. Frese went to the library and read up on schizophrenia. She learned...

Read the Schizophrenia and Relationships article > >

WebMD Public Information from the U.S. National Institutes of Health

Reviewed on July 16, 2006
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