Psicothema was founded in Asturias (northern Spain) in 1989, and is published jointly by the Psychology Faculty of the University of Oviedo and the Psychological Association of the Principality of Asturias (Colegio Oficial de Psicología del Principado de Asturias).
We currently publish four issues per year, which accounts for some 100 articles annually. We admit work from both the basic and applied research fields, and from all areas of Psychology, all manuscripts being anonymously reviewed prior to publication.

  • Director: Laura E. Gómez Sánchez
  • Frequency:
         February | May | August | November
  • ISSN: 0214-9915
  • Digital Edition:: 1886-144X
  • Address: Ildelfonso Sánchez del Río, 4, 1º B
    33001 Oviedo (Spain)
  • Phone: 985 285 778
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Assessment of different components of executive function in grief

Manuel Fernández-Alcántara, Miguel Pérez-García, Mª Nieves Pérez-Marfil, Andrés Catena-Martínez, César Hueso-Montoro and Francisco Cruz-Quintana

Universidad de Granada

Background: Intense and complex symptoms of grief seem to be related to a series of biases and difficulties in areas such as attention, autobiographical memory and problem solving. However, studies of neuropsychological performance have reported contradictory evidence. The role of executive function (EF) in bereaved individuals has not been systematically studied by differentiating between its components. Method: A total of 38 participants who had experienced the death of a loved one participated in this study. They were divided into two groups based on the intensity of their symptoms. They underwent neuropsychological assessments that included measures of flexibility, inhibition, working memory and emotional decision-making. Results: Group differences were found in the parts of the emotional decision-making task that assessed decisions made under risk. Considering each participant’s level of education and emotional variables, the symptoms of grief predicted a substantial variance in their performance in the decision-making task. Conclusion: Intense symptoms of grief seem to be related to poorer emotional decision-making performance but not to flexibility, inhibition or working memory.

Evaluación de diferentes componentes de la función ejecutiva en procesos de duelo. Antecedentes: los sentimientos y complejos síntomas que pueden asociarse al duelo se han relacionado con dificultades en áreas como la atención, la memoria autobiográfica o la resolución de problemas. Aquellos que han evaluado dimensiones neuropsicológicas han mostrado resultados contradictorios, y el rol de las funciones ejecutivas en población adulta experimentando duelo intenso no ha sido estudiado. Método: tomaron parte un total de 38 participantes que habían experimentado la muerte de un ser querido. Fueron divididos en dos grupos dependiendo de la intensidad de los síntomas de duelo (altos frente a bajos). Realizaron una evaluación neuropsicológica que incluyó tareas de flexibilidad, inhibición, memoria de trabajo y toma de decisiones emocionales. Resultados: se encontraron diferencias entre los grupos en la toma de decisiones emocionales para aquellos bloques centrados en las decisiones de riego. Controlando por el nivel educativo y los niveles de ansiedad los resultados indicaron que los síntomas de duelo predecían una parte importante de la varianza en la toma de decisiones emocionales. Conclusiones: la intensidad del duelo parece ir asociada a dificultades en la toma de decisiones emocionales.


Impact factor 2022:  JCR WOS 2022:  FI = 3.6 (Q2);  JCI = 1.21 (Q1) / SCOPUS 2023:  SJR = 1.07;  CiteScore = 6.4 (Q1)