Executive Control And Emotional Processing Biases In Depressive Patients

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Depressed patients show cognitive deficits along with mood disturbances. Growing evidence suggests an impairment at the level of executive control, which might account in part for patients' difficulties in everyday activities and cognitive performance. Furthermore, there is evidence that depressive patients show information processing biases for emotional information which are thought to play a role in the etiology and maintenance of the disorder. Attentional bias occurs in an early stage of information processing, while memory bias occurs in a later stage of processing (strategic elaboration). The goal of this study was to investigate executive control (the Stroop test) and information processing biases for emotional information in an early stage of processing (the emotional Stroop test) and in a later stage of processing (memory recognition test) in healthy subjects and depressive patients. A further objective of this study was to compare the performance of melancholic and non-melancholic depressive patients in the Stroop test, in the emotional Stroop test and in the memory recognition test. Last, we wanted to investigate the relationship between the performance in an executive control task (the Stroop effect) and information processing bias measures for emotional information. This study is the first to investigate the Stroop test, the emotional Stroop test and the memory recognition test in the same healthy subjects and depressed patients. Furthermore, this is the first study investigating information processing biases for emotional information in the melancholic and non-melancholic patients.

Executive Control And Emotional Processing Biases In Depressive Patients

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