March 09, 2005

Sound Test for Schizophrenia

A recently published article in the Archives of General Psychiatry suggests that sound tests may be helpful in diagnosing people who may have schizophrenia.

Schizophrenia can affect thought processes by reducing people's attention span, speed of thought, memory and decision-making abilities. Psychological tests are fairly accurate at diagnosing schizophrenia but schizophrenics often find it difficult to complete the tests because of the problems outlined above. A new test, based on sound, could help with diagnosis. Researchers found that when people were played a series of sounds with odd sounds (either different in rhythym or pitch) inserted at intervals schizophrenics were significantly slower in spotting the strange sounds than people without schizophrenia. The researchers hope that in future the test could be used to help diagnose patients.

Light, Gregory A., Braff, David L. - Mismatch negativity deficits are associated with poor functioning in schizophrenia patients Archives of General Psychiatry 62(2), February 2005, 127-136


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