Relationship between psychological functions and performance of the combined Stroop test by combatants and veterans of ATO-JFO

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T. V. Kutsenko
K. O. Kravchenko
A. V. Pohrebna
D. B. Nasiedkin
I. V. Pampuha
M. Yu. Makarchuk


Introduction. The effects of psychological trauma can be long-lasting, affecting both the veteran's own health and the family and society in common. Since psychological tests are based on the self-report of the subjects, errors can creep into the diagnosis of disorders. Therefore, researchers are trying to find techniques that would make the diagnosis more objective. This study is devoted to the search for correlates between psychological and psychophysiological indices.

Purpose. The aim of research was to investigate correlations between psychological indices obtained using a battery of psychological tests (MMPI, etc.) and indices of latent periods (LP) of sensorimotor reactions during performance of the combined Stroop test by Anti-Terrorist Operation-Joint Forces Operation(ATO-JFO) combatants and veterans.

Methods. The study involved 13 combat veterans of ATO-JFO. Stimuli (the word "Green" or "Red", "Blue" or "Yellow" written in relevant or irrelevant color) were exposed on the right or left from the center of the screen. In the case of congruence the word and its semantic meaning should press one button by the ipsilateral hand ("yes"), while in the case of mismatch – the other button by the contralateral one ("no"). Psychological indices of the subjects are measured using a battery of tests ("Kotenev's method", "MMPI", "Accentuations", "Muddy's resilience", "Scales of basic beliefs", "Emotional orientation", etc.).

Results. The highest number of correlations was found for right-hand "yes" answers. When analyzing the whole set of tests, their number was 33 (Left "yes" - 14, Left "no" – 10, Right "yes" - 33, Right "no" - 16). The table, presented in the article, shows an abbreviated version, with the methods by which the largest number of connections are obtained, but the results are also convincing (Left "yes" – 11, Left "no" – 8, Right "yes" – 19, Right "no" - 11). This result indicates the leading role of the fronto-parietal network of the left hemisphere in the control of higher mental functions.

Originality. New are the data on the nature of the relationship between the LP of reaction when performing a complex Stroop test with psychological indices. Scales that reflect the negative state of the subject are negatively correlated with LP, while scales that reflect a positive psychological state have positive correlation coefficients with the indices of LP. It is possible that a stressful state forces the brain to mobilize, reducing the time of interhemispheric transfer of information, while a calmer state allows it to work in a more relaxed mode.

Conclusion. A large number of correlations have been found between psychological indices obtained using a battery of psychological tests (MMPI, etc.) and indices of latent periods of sensorimotor reactions during the performance of combined Stroop test. The largest number of correlations was obtained for the answers "yes" with the right hand (response in case of congruence of the word and its semantic meaning). It is proposed to use a complex Stroop test for express diagnosis and monitoring of the psychophysiological state of the subjects.

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