Objective: We sought to quantitatively synthesize the existing literature regarding the neurocognitive correlates of confabulations in schizophrenia. Data Selection: The keywords “schizophrenia” and “psychosis” were searched in combination with “confabulation,” “false memory,” and “false memories” on PsycINFO, PubMed, and Scopus. Inclusion criteria included the following: (1) Each primary study must have utilized healthy controls and patients with schizophrenia and included statistical indices that would lend themselves to effect size analyses. (2) The neurocognitive variables were examined by way of a standardized test measure(s). (3) The primary study was peer reviewed and written in English. Studies examining high-risk or first-episode psychosis groups were excluded. Seven studies were included in the analysis. Data Synthesis: Effect sizes (Cohen's d) were calculated for number of confabulations made. When available, the correlation between confabulation and neurocognitive predictors was recorded. A source monitoring task was the primary paradigm employed. A medium to large effect size for intrusions of related words (i.e. words that were conceptually similar to previously presented words) attributed to the experimenter was found across multiple studies. Large effect sizes were demonstrated for the role of executive functions. Conclusion: These findings are consistent with research that suggests that hallucinations develop due to a tendency to externalize experiences. Previous research has demonstrated a relationship between confabulation and psychotic symptomatology. Much of the research in this area do not employ standardized neurocognitive tests. Thus, future studies should consider this whilst being mindful of the ecological validity of the test paradigm employed.
The Neurocognitive Correlates of Confabulation in Schizophrenia: A Quantitative Review
Arch Clin Neuropsychol (2016) 31 (6): 647.
30 August 2016
K Grimes, K Zakzanis; C-19
The Neurocognitive Correlates of Confabulation in Schizophrenia: A Quantitative Review. Arch Clin Neuropsychol 2016; 31 (6): 647. doi: 10.1093/arclin/acw043.168
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