Brief Reports| Volume 46, ISSUE 7, P1003-1005, October 01, 1999

Spatial working memory: absence of gender differences in schizophrenia patients and healthy control subjects


      Background: Spatial working memory dysfunction has been suggested to be a cardinal feature of schizophrenia. But schizophrenia is heterogeneous in its clinical profile, course, and outcome. One fundamental contributor to this heterogeneity may be gender. No report has yet addressed gender differences in spatial working memory, as measured by the delayed-response task (DRT).
      Methods: We aggregated data from three previously published studies of spatial working memory in schizophrenia and also collected DRT data from a new sample of subjects in order to examine potential gender differences in DRT performance.
      Results: As previously reported, schizophrenia patients (n = 71) showed deficits in spatial working memory relative to normal control subjects (n = 213), however, no within-group or between-group gender differences were present.
      Conclusions: These findings provide evidence for the absence of gender differences in spatial working memory function.


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