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Cardiovascular Psychiatry and Neurology
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 204043, 8 pages
Clinical Study

Are Cardiovascular Risk Factors Associated with Verbal Learning and Memory Impairment in Patients with Schizophrenia? A Cross-Sectional Study

1EA 3279—Public Health, Chronic Disease, and Quality of Life Research Unit, Aix-Marseille University, 13005 Marseille, France
2Department of Psychiatry, Sainte-Marguerite University Hospital, 13009 Marseille, France
3Department of Addiction, Sainte-Marguerite University Hospital, 13009 Marseille, France
4Department of Psychiatry, La Conception University Hospital, 13009 Marseille, France

Received 11 July 2012; Revised 25 September 2012; Accepted 20 October 2012

Academic Editor: Kenji Hashimoto

Copyright © 2012 Christophe Lancon et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objective. The aim of this study is to assess the relationships of cardiovascular risk factors with verbal learning and memory in patients with schizophrenia. Methods and Design. cross-sectional study. Inclusion Criteria. Diagnosis of schizophrenia according to the DSM-IV-TR criteria. Data Collection. Sociodemographic information, clinical characteristics, anthropometric measurements, blood tests, and episodic memory using the California Verbal Learning Test (CVLT). Analysis. A multivariate analysis using multiple linear regressions was performed to determine variables that are potentially associated with verbal learning and memory. Results. One hundred and sixty-eight outpatients participated in our study. An association was found between the metabolic syndrome (MetS) and memory impairment on measures of verbal learning, and short- and long-term memory. Among the different components of MeTS, hypertriglycerides, abdominal obesity, and low HDL cholesterol were the only factors associated with memory impairment. Alcohol dependence or abuse was associated with a higher rate of forgetting. Conclusion. Our findings suggest that MetS and alcohol use may be linked with memory impairment in schizophrenia. These findings provide important insights into the interdependencies of cardiovascular risk factors and cognitive disorders and support novel strategies for treating and preventing cognitive disorders in patients with schizophrenia.