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Counterfactual thinking in Tourette's syndrome: a study using three measures.

Zago S, Delli Ponti A, Mastroianni S, Solca F, Tomasini E, Poletti B, Inglese S, Sartori G, Porta M - Behav Neurol (2014)

Bottom Line: Pathophysiological evidence suggests an involvement of frontostriatal circuits in Tourette syndrome (TS) and cognitive abnormalities have been detected in tasks sensitive to cognitive deficits associated with prefrontal damage (verbal fluency, planning, attention shifting, working memory, cognitive flexibility, and social reasoning).In this work, we evaluate the performance of CFT in a group of patients with Tourette's syndrome compared with a group of healthy participants.The possible explanations of this unexpected result are discussed below.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: U.O.C. Neurologia, IRCCS, Fondazione Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico, Milan, Italy.

ABSTRACT
Pathophysiological evidence suggests an involvement of frontostriatal circuits in Tourette syndrome (TS) and cognitive abnormalities have been detected in tasks sensitive to cognitive deficits associated with prefrontal damage (verbal fluency, planning, attention shifting, working memory, cognitive flexibility, and social reasoning). A disorder in counterfactual thinking (CFT), a behavioural executive process linked to the prefrontal cortex functioning, has not been investigated in TS. CFT refers to the generation of a mental simulation of alternatives to past factual events, actions, and outcomes. It is a pervasive cognitive feature in everyday life and it is closely related to decision-making, planning, problem-solving, and experience-driven learning-cognitive processes that involve wide neuronal networks in which prefrontal lobes play a fundamental role. Clinical observations in patients with focal prefrontal lobe damage or with neurological and psychiatric diseases related to frontal lobe dysfunction (e.g., Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, and schizophrenia) show counterfactual thinking impairments. In this work, we evaluate the performance of CFT in a group of patients with Tourette's syndrome compared with a group of healthy participants. Overall results showed no statistical differences in counterfactual thinking between TS patients and controls in the three counterfactual measures proposed. The possible explanations of this unexpected result are discussed below.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Correct responses produced by TS patients and in control subjects in spontaneous counterfactual generation test and counterfactual inference test (CIT).
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection


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fig1: Correct responses produced by TS patients and in control subjects in spontaneous counterfactual generation test and counterfactual inference test (CIT).

Mentions: As reported in Table 1, TS performance was within the normal range on MMSE and on the two frontal measures (Verbal Phonemic Fluency Test, Frontal Assessment Battery FAB). The DEX-S total mean score was 24.9, indicating only a moderate dysexecutive functioning, as proposed by Pedrero-Pérez et al. [35]. There were no influences of gender and education on the cognitive performances. In addition, no differences emerged between TS patients and controls in the three CFT tasks. In particular, TS patients reported a comparable number of mental alternatives in response to recalling a negative personal event as did controls (Spontaneous Generation Mean: TS = 2.3; Controls = 1.9; P = 0.076 ns) (Figure 1). Moreover, participants obtain similar scores on CIT, a test analysing the ability to use CFT in order to make inference (CIT total score TS = 1.7; Controls = 2.1; P = 0.08 ns). The two groups differed neither on the test focused on the influence of anticipated counterfactual regret on behavior, nor on the level of confidence shown (Regret P = 0.64; Confidence Level P = 0.072 ns) (Figure 2). No differences were found in the patients with DBS implant.


Counterfactual thinking in Tourette's syndrome: a study using three measures.

Zago S, Delli Ponti A, Mastroianni S, Solca F, Tomasini E, Poletti B, Inglese S, Sartori G, Porta M - Behav Neurol (2014)

Correct responses produced by TS patients and in control subjects in spontaneous counterfactual generation test and counterfactual inference test (CIT).
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4265513&req=5

fig1: Correct responses produced by TS patients and in control subjects in spontaneous counterfactual generation test and counterfactual inference test (CIT).
Mentions: As reported in Table 1, TS performance was within the normal range on MMSE and on the two frontal measures (Verbal Phonemic Fluency Test, Frontal Assessment Battery FAB). The DEX-S total mean score was 24.9, indicating only a moderate dysexecutive functioning, as proposed by Pedrero-Pérez et al. [35]. There were no influences of gender and education on the cognitive performances. In addition, no differences emerged between TS patients and controls in the three CFT tasks. In particular, TS patients reported a comparable number of mental alternatives in response to recalling a negative personal event as did controls (Spontaneous Generation Mean: TS = 2.3; Controls = 1.9; P = 0.076 ns) (Figure 1). Moreover, participants obtain similar scores on CIT, a test analysing the ability to use CFT in order to make inference (CIT total score TS = 1.7; Controls = 2.1; P = 0.08 ns). The two groups differed neither on the test focused on the influence of anticipated counterfactual regret on behavior, nor on the level of confidence shown (Regret P = 0.64; Confidence Level P = 0.072 ns) (Figure 2). No differences were found in the patients with DBS implant.

Bottom Line: Pathophysiological evidence suggests an involvement of frontostriatal circuits in Tourette syndrome (TS) and cognitive abnormalities have been detected in tasks sensitive to cognitive deficits associated with prefrontal damage (verbal fluency, planning, attention shifting, working memory, cognitive flexibility, and social reasoning).In this work, we evaluate the performance of CFT in a group of patients with Tourette's syndrome compared with a group of healthy participants.The possible explanations of this unexpected result are discussed below.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: U.O.C. Neurologia, IRCCS, Fondazione Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico, Milan, Italy.

ABSTRACT
Pathophysiological evidence suggests an involvement of frontostriatal circuits in Tourette syndrome (TS) and cognitive abnormalities have been detected in tasks sensitive to cognitive deficits associated with prefrontal damage (verbal fluency, planning, attention shifting, working memory, cognitive flexibility, and social reasoning). A disorder in counterfactual thinking (CFT), a behavioural executive process linked to the prefrontal cortex functioning, has not been investigated in TS. CFT refers to the generation of a mental simulation of alternatives to past factual events, actions, and outcomes. It is a pervasive cognitive feature in everyday life and it is closely related to decision-making, planning, problem-solving, and experience-driven learning-cognitive processes that involve wide neuronal networks in which prefrontal lobes play a fundamental role. Clinical observations in patients with focal prefrontal lobe damage or with neurological and psychiatric diseases related to frontal lobe dysfunction (e.g., Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, and schizophrenia) show counterfactual thinking impairments. In this work, we evaluate the performance of CFT in a group of patients with Tourette's syndrome compared with a group of healthy participants. Overall results showed no statistical differences in counterfactual thinking between TS patients and controls in the three counterfactual measures proposed. The possible explanations of this unexpected result are discussed below.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus