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NCJ Number: 219678 Find in a Library
Title: Using Neuropsychological Profiles to Classify Neglected Children With or Without Physical Abuse
Journal: Child Abuse & Neglect  Volume:31  Issue:6  Dated:June 2007  Pages:631-643
Author(s): Pierre Nolin; Louise Ethier
Date Published: June 2007
Page Count: 13
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study investigated whether cognitive functions might differentiate neglected children from non-neglected children and described the impact of multiple types of maltreatment on children.
Abstract: The results indicated that cognitive performance could be used to identify the cumulative effects of neglect with physical abuse compared to neglect alone. Specific cognitive characteristics emerged for both the neglected groups with or without physical abuse. Participants who suffered neglect with physical abuse exhibited cognitive deficits in auditory attention and response set, visual-motor integration, problem-solving, abstraction, and planning. Participants who suffered neglect without physical abuse differed from the comparison subjects only in the areas of auditory attention and response set, and visual-motor integration, where they showed a deficit when compared to the comparison subjects. On the other hand, participants who suffered neglect without physical abuse scored higher than comparison subjects on problem-solving, abstraction, and planning. The two groups of neglected participants thus shared impaired auditory attention, flexibility, response inhibition, and visual-motor integration. The findings lend support to other studies that have found links between severe stress and alterations in brain structures and functions in children. The research involved comparing 79 children ages 6 to 12 years who were receiving Child Protection Service due to either neglect with physical abuse or neglect without physical abuse to a group of comparison children matched for age, gender, and annual family income. Participants were recruited over an 18 month period from and around a mid-sized city in Quebec, Canada. Comparison subjects were recruited via a letter home from their schools requesting participation in a study on child cognitive development. Participants and comparison subjects completed a neuropsychological assessment that measured motor performance, attention, memory and learning, visual-motor integration, language, frontal/executive functions, and intelligence. Data were analyzed using MANOVA with group membership as the independent variable and the neuropsychological test results as the dependent variables. Tables, references
Main Term(s): Child abuse; Child emotional abuse and neglect
Index Term(s): Canada; Child development; Cognitive developmental theory; Neurological disorders
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