Processing spatial-temporal information in recent-onset schizophrenia: the study of short-term memory and its susceptibility to distraction

Brain Cogn. 2007 Aug;64(3):201-7. doi: 10.1016/j.bandc.2007.03.001. Epub 2007 Apr 25.


Memory impairment is a core feature in schizophrenia (SZ). The aim of this study was to investigate short-term memory (STM) and its sensitivity to distraction with visual-spatial material. This study comprised 23 recent-onset SZ patients and 23 healthy controls. The degree of disruption upon recall from interleaving irrelevant items within a sequence of to-be-remembered items-the sandwich effect [Hitch, G. J. (1975). The role of attention in visual and auditory suffix effects. Memory and Cognition, 3, 501-505]-was examined. STM performance, whether in the presence or absence of distraction, was poorer and markedly more vulnerable to disruption in SZ. Our results suggest that processing spatial information in STM is susceptible to interference in SZ.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antipsychotic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Attention*
  • Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Memory Disorders / diagnosis
  • Memory Disorders / etiology*
  • Memory, Short-Term*
  • Mental Recall
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Perceptual Disorders / diagnosis
  • Perceptual Disorders / etiology*
  • Risperidone / therapeutic use
  • Schizophrenia / complications*
  • Schizophrenia / drug therapy
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Space Perception / physiology*
  • Time Perception / physiology*


  • Antipsychotic Agents
  • Risperidone