Executive dysfunction in drug-induced psychosis

  • Richard Eno Lawani
  • Shivani Tomar


Executive dysfunction is a core feature of drug-induced psychosis. Executive function is an important cognitive domain crucial for an individual to achieve adaptive living. The present researchers undertook a neuropsychological assessment of executive functioning among Nigerian patients diagnosed with drug-induced psychosis (DIP). The assessment tolls employed were mini-mental status examination (MMSE), trail making test parts A and B, fluency test and Stroop colour word test (SCWT), the executive function components assessed were working memory, inhibition, fluency and set shifting. Ninety-seven participants consisting of patients diagnosed with drug-induced psychosis (n=53, 4 females and 49 males) and a control group of 44 persons (21 females and 23 males) participated in the study. There were statistically significant differences between DIP cases and controls on all the executive function components assessed. Utilizing regression analysis; the most significant predictors of the trail making test (TMT) part B among cases were general cognitive functioning (t = 4.47, p< 0.001) and current age (t= 3.30, P= 0.002). Drug-induced psychosis cases, showed more executive functioning impairment than controls on the components assessed. Hence, drug-induced psychosis patients are more vulnerable to executive dysfunction than the general population.