Executive functioning is a multi-dimensional construct covering several sub-processes. The aim of this study was to determine whether executive functions, indexed by a broad range of executive measures remain stable in first episode psychosis (FEP) over time. Eighty-two patients and 107 age and gender matched healthy controls were assessed on five subdomains of executive functioning; working memory, fluency, flexibility, and inhibitory control at baseline and at 1 year follow-up. Results showed that patients performed significantly poorer than controls on all executive measures at both assessment points. In general executive functions remained stable from baseline to follow-up, although both groups improved on measures of inhibitory control and flexibility. In phonemic fluency, controls showed a slight improvement while patients showed a slight decline. Investigation of individual trajectories revealed some fluctuations in both groups over time, but mainly supports the group level findings. The implications of these results are discussed.
- Psykiatri (30215)