Cognition in schizophrenia: impairments, determinants, and functional importance

Psychiatr Clin North Am. 2005 Sep;28(3):613-33, 626. doi: 10.1016/j.psc.2005.05.004.


Recent findings support and add to earlier findings of cognitive dysfunction in schizophrenia. Deficits across neurocognitive domains such as attention, working memory, language skills, and executive functioning tend to be moderate, with the most pronounced deficits found in verbal learning and memory. All these neurocognitive domains are related to adaptive and social skills, with executive functions and verbal learning and memory showing more variance across more domains than other neuro-cognitive variables. Negative symptoms and neurocognitive domains, although correlated, are distinct and have differential pathways of change with treatment. General psychopathology symptoms, such as depression and anxiety, may become important treatment targets as strategies are developed for translating cognitive enhancement to real-world functional performance.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antipsychotic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Attention
  • Cognition Disorders / diagnosis
  • Cognition Disorders / epidemiology*
  • Humans
  • Language Disorders / diagnosis
  • Language Disorders / epidemiology
  • Memory Disorders / diagnosis
  • Memory Disorders / epidemiology
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Schizophrenia / drug therapy
  • Schizophrenia / epidemiology*
  • Social Perception
  • Substance-Related Disorders / epidemiology
  • Verbal Learning


  • Antipsychotic Agents