Theory of mind in major depressive disorder: a meta-analysis

Bora, Emre and Berk, Michael 2016, Theory of mind in major depressive disorder: a meta-analysis, Journal of affective disorders, vol. 191, pp. 49-55, doi: 10.1016/j.jad.2015.11.023.

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Title Theory of mind in major depressive disorder: a meta-analysis
Author(s) Bora, Emre
Berk, MichaelORCID iD for Berk, Michael
Journal name Journal of affective disorders
Volume number 191
Start page 49
End page 55
Total pages 7
Publisher Elsevier
Place of publication Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Publication date 2016-02
ISSN 1573-2517
Keyword(s) Cognition
Major depression
Social cognition
Theory of mind
Science & Technology
Life Sciences & Biomedicine
Clinical Neurology
Neurosciences & Neurology
Summary OBJECTIVE: Social cognitive deficits can contribute to risk for depression and to psychosocial impairment during depression. However, available evidence suggests that emotion recognition is only marginally impaired in major depressive disorder (MDD). Recent studies have investigated theory of mind (ToM) abilities, a cognitively more demanding aspect of social cognition. METHODS: We conducted a meta-analysis of studies comparing ToM abilities in MDD and healthy controls. 18 studies comparing 613 patients with MDD and 529 healthy controls were included. RESULTS: MDD patients significantly underperformed healthy controls in ToM (d=0.51-0.58). ToM impairment in MDD was evident in response to different types of ToM tasks (verbal/visual and cognitive/affective and reasoning/decoding). ToM impairment was significantly related to severity of depressive symptoms. CONCLUSION: Theory of mind abilities are impaired during depression and can potentially contribute to psychosocial difficulties during depression. There is a need to investigate ToM abilities in different subtypes and stages of depression, especially in remitted patients.
Language eng
DOI 10.1016/j.jad.2015.11.023
Field of Research 110319 Psychiatry (incl Psychotherapy)
11 Medical And Health Sciences
17 Psychology And Cognitive Sciences
Socio Economic Objective 920410 Mental Health
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2016, Elsevier
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Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Health
School of Medicine
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