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89 Depression and Executive Function in a Mexican Population

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  21 December 2023

Natalia Lozano Acosta*
Affiliation:
The Lundquist Institute, Torrance, CA, USA. Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education, Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico.
Yvette De Jesus
Affiliation:
The Lundquist Institute, Torrance, CA, USA. California State University, Fresno, Fresno, CA, USA.
Krissy E Smith
Affiliation:
The Lundquist Institute, Torrance, CA, USA. California State University, Dominguez Hills, Carson, CA, USA.
Isabel D.C. Munoz
Affiliation:
The Lundquist Institute, Torrance, CA, USA. California State University, Northridge, Northridge, CA, USA.
Adriana Cuello Cancino
Affiliation:
The Lundquist Institute, Torrance, CA, USA. Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education, Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico.
Mariam Gomez
Affiliation:
The Lundquist Institute, Torrance, CA, USA. Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education, Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico.
Raymundo Cervantes
Affiliation:
The Lundquist Institute, Torrance, CA, USA. California State University, Dominguez Hills, Carson, CA, USA.
Daniel W Lopez Hernandez
Affiliation:
The Lundquist Institute, Torrance, CA, USA. University of California San Diego Health, San Diego, CA, USA
*
Correspondence: Natalia Lozano Acosta, Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education, The Lundquist Institute, natalia.lozano000@gmail.com
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Abstract

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Objective:

Depression is a mood or emotional state that is characterized by feelings of sadness (i.e., a loss of interest in activities, low self-worth) for a minimum of two weeks. Executive function is a set of mental processes that are necessary for cognitive control of behavior to achieve and successfully execute a specific goal (e.g., inhibition). Researchers have reported that people with abnormal symptoms of depression (ASD) demonstrate worse executive functioning abilities (e.g., planning) compared to persons with normal symptoms of depression (NSD). Currently, there is a lack of research studies examining how depressive symptoms influence executive functioning in people that identify as Mexican. The purpose of the present study was to evaluate the influence of depression on executive functioning in a healthy Mexican Spanish speaking population. We hypothesized that participants with NSD would demonstrate better executive functioning abilities compared to participants with ASD.

Participants and Methods:

The sample in the present study consisted of 87 neurologically and psychologically healthy Mexican participants all residing in Mexico. Mean age was 24.71 (SD = 9.66) and 14.78 (SD = 4.50) years of education completed. Participants completed a neuropsychological battery in Spanish and were divided into two groups: NSD (n = 61) and ASD (n = 26). The Stroop Color Word Test - Color-Word (SCWT-CW) task, phonemic verbal fluency task consisting of three trials, and semantic verbal fluency task consisting of one trial were used to evaluate executive functioning. In addition, participants completed the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale in Spanish to report the current level of depression. ANCOVAS, controlling for age were used to examine executive functioning performance. We used a threshold of p < .05 for statistical significance.

Results:

ANCOVAS revealed the NSD group outperformed the ASD group on the SCWT-CW task, p = .004, np2 = .10. We also found the NSD group outperformed the ASD group on the phonemic verbal fluency task, p = .045, np2 = .05. Finally, no significant differences were found between depression groups on the semantic verbal fluency task.

Conclusions:

As we predicted, the NSD group demonstrated better executive functioning abilities compared to the ASD group, except on the semantic verbal fluency task. Our data suggests that the current level of depression have a significant influence on verbal executive functioning abilities in a Spanish speaking population. Future studies with larger sample size should evaluate if current symptoms of depression influence non-verbal executive functioning abilities in a Spanish speaking Mexican population.

Type
Poster Session 03: Dementia | Amnesia | Memory | Language | Executive Functions
Copyright
Copyright © INS. Published by Cambridge University Press, 2023