Cognitive Dysfunctions in Posttraumatic Stress Disorder


TURK PSIKIYATRI DERGISI, vol.28, no.2, pp.124-131, 2017 (SSCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 28 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2017
  • Doi Number: 10.5080/u18276
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus, TR DİZİN (ULAKBİM)
  • Page Numbers: pp.124-131
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a condition that occurs after a traumatic event, and its diagnostic criteria include attention and memory deficits as well as symptoms of anxiety. We aimed to review the literature related to attention, memory, and executive functions in PTSD. Although studies on the subject are limited (in that there is no uniformity in terms of trauma type, selection of the control groups or types of neuropsychological tests used), most reported similar deficits in PTSD subjects in terms of memory and executive functions including attention. Since the presence of psychiatric comorbidities may disrupt neuropsychological functions, results of studies that have not controlled comorbidity may be questionable. However, studies that excluded the comorbid conditions reported similar deficits in cognitive functions in PTSD patients. The relationship between recovery from PTSD symptoms and change in cognitive functions has been examined in only a few studies, and most have reported an improvement for both memory and executive functions in remitted patients. The improvement in executive functions, however, has been limited by the difficulty of task. Cognitive deficits have been among the major causes of disabilities in PTSD patients. Therefore, the amount of improvement in cognitive dysfunctions by current treatments of PTSD deserves more attention.