Psychiatry and Clinical Psychopharmacology
Original Article

The Assessment of Cognitive Dysfunction in Major Depressive Disorder: A 16-Week Prospective Case-Control Study


Psychiatry Clinic, Manisa Mental Health and Diseases Hospital, Manisa, Turkey


Psychiatry Clinic, Reyap Hospital, Tekirdağ, Turkey


Department of Psychiatry, Tepecik Training and Research Hospital, İzmir, Turkey


Psychiatry Clinic, Balıkesir State Hospital, Balıkesir, Turkey


Psychiatry Clinic, Boylam Psychiatry Institute, Ankara, Turkey


Psychiatry Clinic, Menemen State Hospital, İzmir, Turkey


Department of Psychiatry, Manisa Celal Bayar University Hospital, Manisa, Turkey

Psychiatry and Clinical Psychopharmacology 2021; 31: 25-33
DOI: 10.5152/pcp.2021.20148
Read: 1507 Downloads: 549 Published: 01 April 2021

Objective: Cognitive dysfunction is one of the core components of major depressive disorder (MDD). It is estimated that two-thirds of patients diagnosed with MDD have cognitive deficits. Cognitive symptoms are pervasive and affect functioning in several domains. This 16-week prospective case-control study aimed to assess the change of mood and cognitive symptoms during treatment.

Materials and Methods: Ninety-eight patients with MDD and 113 healthy controls (HCs) participated in the study. The MDD group was evaluated 6 times (baseline, 2nd, 4th, 8th, 12th, and 16th weeks). For mood symptoms, the Montgomery-Asberg Depression Rating Scale was used, and for neurocognitive functions, the Perceived Deficits Questionnaire-Depression was used, and the Digit Symbol Substitution Test was administered to both groups.

Results: At baseline, compared with the HCs, the neurocognitive function of patients with MDD was worse. From the 8th to the 16th week assessments, in both neurocognitive tests, the cognitive functions of patients with MDD had improved. Despite this improvement and the patients achieving remission, the patients’ cognitive performance did not improve to the level of the HC group at the 16th week.

Conclusion: Our longitudinal research revealed that even though mood symptoms decreased and patients with depression did achieve symptomatic remission, their cognitive deficits perpetuated.

Cite this article as: Poyraz Çökmüş F, Murat Özkan H, Sücüllüoğlu-Dikici D, et al. The assessment of cognitive dysfunction in major depressive disorder: A 16-week prospective case-control study. Psychiatr Clin Psychopharmacol. 2021; 31: 25-33.

EISSN 2475-0581