Sensory and cognitive processing deficits in anxious depressed children: a neurobehavioral study
Emerson, Carol S.
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The neurobehavioral effects of anxiety and depression on functional systems of the right posterior and left frontal regions were measured in two groups of 9 to 11 year old boys to determine whether children exhibit processing and motor deficits similar to those found in previous studies of depressed adults. Individuals with a prior history of anxiety, depression, learning disability or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder were eliminated from participation. One group was classified as high in depression and anxiety based on cut-off scores on the Child Depression Inventory, and the Trait scale of the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory for Children, respectively. The other group was classified as low in depression and anxiety using the same measures. Group performance was compared on measures of auditory identification of affective prosody (happy, sad, angry, and neutral), hemispheric lateralization of affective and propositional speech, grip strength, verbal fluency, problem solving, and alternation and sequencing. As predicted, anxious-depressed subjects performed less accurately on the identification of happy, sad, and angry affective prosody in congruent and incongruent conditions, were relatively less lateralized on both dichotic listening and grip strength measures, Further, anxious depressed children were less proficient than non-anxious, nondepressed children on measures of frontal executive functioning, including verbal fluency, problem-solving, and alternation, but not on measures of sequencing.
- Doctoral Dissertations