Neuropsychological deficit profiles in systemic lupus erythematosus

Appl Neuropsychol. 2000;7(2):96-101. doi: 10.1207/S15324826AN0702_5.


Although neuropsychological deficits have been reported in several cognitive domains in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), there is considerable variability in the literature about which neuropsychological domains are most affected. Similar to studies that demonstrated that specific profiles of neuropsychological deficits exist for those with traumatic brain injury (TBI; Johnstone, Hexum, & Ashkanazi, 1995), this study examined whether a specific pattern of deficits is present in SLE. By comparing reading scores (as estimates of premorbid ability) to tests of concurrent cognitive abilities (i.e., memory, attention, etc.), it was determined that SLE presents a profile distinct from TBI, with the most significant impairments noted in expressive language (Zdiff = -1.39), attention (Zdiff = -0.41), and speed of processing (Zdiff = -0.40). In contrast to TBI, no impairment was noted in intelligence, memory, or cognitive flexibility. Results suggest that memory problems reported by individuals with SLE may be related to inattention. Clinical implications are discussed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Attention*
  • Cognition Disorders / etiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Intelligence
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic / complications
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic / psychology*
  • Male
  • Memory*
  • Middle Aged
  • Neuropsychological Tests