March 13th, 2013
Posted by Caroline Popper, M.D., M.P.H.
Scientists have puzzled over cognitive differences between men and women for at least 100 years. And the results of their work support the reality that should be on the minds of everyone working in healthcare; one size doesn’t fit all.
Researchers in Madrid and at UCLA recently tested men and women on cognitive tasks, including spatial reasoning, inductive reasoning, keeping track of tasks, and attention to numbers. Women, although they have smaller brains – and most importantly because of its role in memory, emotion and reason – a smaller hippocampus than men, were nonetheless better able to handle most of these tasks (except spatial), while showing less brain activity on an MRI. Thus, women require less neural material (and energy) to perform cognitive tasks on an equal level with men.
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