CE verbal episodic memory impairment in schizophrenia: A comparison with frontal lobe lesion patients

Bruce K. Christensen*, Regan E. Patrick, Donald T. Stuss, Susan Gillingham, Robert B. Zipursky

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Schizophrenia (SCZ)-related verbal memory impairment is hypothesized to be mediated, in part, by frontal lobe (FTL) dysfunction. However, little research has contrasted the performance of SCZ patients with that of patients exhibiting circumscribed frontal lesions. The current study compared verbal episodic memory in patients with SCZ and focal FTL lesions (left frontal, LF; right frontal, RF; and bi-frontal, BF) on a four-trial list learning task consisting of three lists of varying semantic organizational structure. Each dependent variable was examined at two levels: scores collapsed across all four trials and learning scores (i.e., trial 4-trial 1). Performance deficits were observed in each patient group across most dependent measures at both levels. Regarding patient group differences, SCZ patients outperformed LF/BF patients (i.e., either learning scores or scores collapsed across trial) on free recall, primacy, primary memory, secondary memory, and subjective organization, whereas they only outperformed RF patients on the semantically blocked list on recency and primary memory. Collectively, these results indicate that the pattern of memory performance is largely similar between patients with SCZ and those with RF lesions. These data support tentative arguments that verbal episodic memory deficits in SCZ may be mediated by frontal dysfunction in the right hemisphere.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)647-666
Number of pages20
JournalClinical Neuropsychologist
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2013
Externally publishedYes


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