Neuropsychological function in children with maltreatment-related posttraumatic stress disorder.
OBJECTIVE: Studies in adults have reported changes in concentration, learning, and memory in individuals with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). However, there are few studies of cognitive function in children with PTSD. The goal of the current study was to evaluate cognition in children with PTSD. METHOD: The cognitive status of 14 pediatric psychiatric outpatients with maltreatment-related PTSD and 15 sociodemographically similar children who were healthy and had not been maltreated was examined. Neuropsychological instruments measured language, attention, abstract reasoning/executive function, learning and memory, visual-spatial processing, and psychomotor function. RESULTS: The children with PTSD performed more poorly on measures of attention and abstract reasoning/executive function. CONCLUSIONS: Although based on a small number of subjects, these results support cognitive differences between children with and without maltreatment-related PTSD.
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