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Neural activation in stress-related exhaustion: cross-sectional observations and interventional effects
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology. Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Umeå Centre for Functional Brain Imaging (UFBI).ORCID iD: 0000-0003-3256-9018
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology. Department of Social and Psychological Studies, Karlstad University, Karlstad, Sweden.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-3450-8067
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Umeå Centre for Functional Brain Imaging (UFBI). Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Integrative Medical Biology (IMB), Physiology.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Community Medicine and Rehabilitation, Physiotherapy.
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2017 (English)In: Psychiatry Research: Neuroimaging, ISSN 0925-4927, E-ISSN 1872-7506, Vol. 269, p. 17-25Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The primary purpose of this study was to investigate the association between burnout and neural activation during working memory processing in patients with stress-related exhaustion. Additionally, we investigated the neural effects of cognitive training as part of stress rehabilitation. Fifty-five patients with clinical diagnosis of exhaustion disorder were administered the n-back task during fMRI scanning at baseline. Ten patients completed a 12-week cognitive training intervention, as an addition to stress rehabilitation. Eleven patients served as a treatment-as-usual control group. At baseline, burnout level was positively associated with neural activation in the rostral prefrontal cortex, the posterior parietal cortex and the striatum, primarily in the 2-back condition. Following stress rehabilitation, the striatal activity decreased as a function of improved levels of burnout. No significant association between burnout level and working memory performance was found, however, our findings indicate that frontostriatal neural responses related to working memory were modulated by burnout severity. We suggest that patients with high levels of burnout need to recruit additional cognitive resources to uphold task performance. Following cognitive training, increased neural activation was observed during 3-back in working memory-related regions, including the striatum, however, low sample size limits any firm conclusions.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Clare: Elsevier, 2017. Vol. 269, p. 17-25
Keywords [en]
Working memory fMRI, Burnout, Stress rehabilitation, Exhaustion disorder, Cognitive training
National Category
Neurosciences Applied Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-139932DOI: 10.1016/j.pscychresns.2017.08.008ISI: 000412461700003PubMedID: 28917154OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-139932DiVA, id: diva2:1148090
Available from: 2017-10-10 Created: 2017-10-10 Last updated: 2018-06-09Bibliographically approved

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Malmberg Gavelin, HannaStigsdotter Neely, AnnaAndersson, MicaelEskilsson, ThereseSlunga Järvholm, LisbethBoraxbekk, Carl-Johan

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Malmberg Gavelin, HannaStigsdotter Neely, AnnaAndersson, MicaelEskilsson, ThereseSlunga Järvholm, LisbethBoraxbekk, Carl-Johan
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Department of PsychologyUmeå Centre for Functional Brain Imaging (UFBI)PhysiologyPhysiotherapyOccupational and Environmental MedicineCentre for Demographic and Ageing Research (CEDAR)
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