Document Detail

Semantic distance abnormalities in mild cognitive impairment: their nature and relationship to function.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  23139013     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
OBJECTIVE: The authors sought to directly examine compromises in the semantic system in mild cognitive impairment and their possible relationship to everyday functional competencies.
METHOD: Study participants were 25 patients who met criteria for amnestic mild cognitive impairment, 27 patients with mild or moderate Alzheimer's disease, and 70 healthy comparison subjects. The authors administered a novel semantic distance task in which participants make decisions about word or image stimuli that correspond to real-world entities that differ in physical size. The authors also administered a performance-based measure of everyday functional competence.
RESULTS: Participants in the mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's groups were consistently less accurate and slower than healthy comparison subjects in semantic decisions in which words were used as stimuli. When these participants had to make more fine-grained decisions about the semantic attribute of size, their performance in accuracy and reaction time disproportionately worsened relative to that of comparison subjects. In image-based conditions in which line drawings were used as stimuli, sensory-perceptual information (i.e., the size of the drawings themselves) had undue influence over semantic knowledge judgments in the mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's groups. Performance in the semantic distance task was a strong and significant predictor of everyday functional competence in the mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's groups.
CONCLUSIONS: This study synthesized several distinct strands in the mild cognitive impairment literature by providing evidence for 1) compromises in the semantic system in mild cognitive impairment, not confounded by overt retrieval or refractory access; 2) intrusion of perceptual information on semantic processing; and 3) a robust relation between semantic corruption and difficulties in everyday functioning.
Brady C Kirchberg; Jessica R Cohen; Margarita B Adelsky; Justin J Buthorn; Jesus J Gomar; Marc Gordon; Jeremy Koppel; Erica Christen; Concepcion Conejero-Goldberg; Peter Davies; Terry E Goldberg
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  The American journal of psychiatry     Volume:  169     ISSN:  1535-7228     ISO Abbreviation:  Am J Psychiatry     Publication Date:  2012 Dec 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2013-01-23     Completed Date:  2013-02-01     Revised Date:  2014-11-14    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0370512     Medline TA:  Am J Psychiatry     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  1275-83     Citation Subset:  AIM; IM    
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MeSH Terms
Activities of Daily Living / psychology*
Alzheimer Disease / psychology
Case-Control Studies
Language Disorders / psychology*
Language Tests
Mild Cognitive Impairment / psychology*
Neuropsychological Tests
Reaction Time
Comment In:
Am J Psychiatry. 2012 Dec;169(12):1226-9   [PMID:  23212051 ]

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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