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Cognitive Impairment In School-Aged Children With Early Trauma

Summary of the article

This article is based on the effect of childhood traumatic experiences on cognition. Cognitive function in neglected, abused, or/mistreated children has revealed a deficiency in major tasks related to memory and verbal capability, along with worse school performance. Furthermore, lower intelligence performance (IQ) scores, overall, have been presented to be linked with greater rates of symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (mainly re-experiencing indications), greater Post-traumatic stress disorder rigorousness, and higher degrees of childhood trauma. At the same time, a greater level of intelligence is linked with a lesser possibility of exposure to traumatic occurrences and better resilience. Low socioeconomic status, less parent-child-association quality, a disrupted family pattern, a history of family abuse, and parental psychopathology are some of the risk factors for every sort of abuse or neglect. The general risk factors for a worse result after a traumatic experience in childhood are the initial age of onset, the severity of abuse, and the frequency of abuse. In the research, 30 medication-naive children with an age range of 5 to 12 years with early childhood trauma were recruited. The child protection program referred those children. A short form of the Wechsler intelligence scale for Children, a card sorting test, and a continuous performance test were used to measure intelligence, memory working, cognitive functioning, and attention deficit or hyperactivity disorder. The results of this research revealed that there is a significant linkage between traumatic experiences in early childhood and the existence of psychiatric symptoms of cognitive disabilities. For block design, digit forward, and digit span assessment, this linkage was statistically valid and significant. Children with sub-syndromal symptoms and childhood traumatic experiences exhibited worse global functioning along with a deficiency in cognitive functioning, assessed Intelligence, attention, and speedy verbal recall. The risk factors that are related to childhood traumatic experiences in this sample were the same as those of the previous literature and included features of the primary caregiver, like their drug and alcohol abuse, low level of education, and the existence of a chronic illness.


Bücker, J., Kapczinski, F., Post, R., Ceresér, K., Szobot, C., & Yatham, L. et al. (2012). Cognitive impairment in school-aged children with early trauma. Comprehensive Psychiatry53(6), 758-764.



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