General Health

General health issues, Medical conditions, Research and studies and more

Mental Health

Natural Medicine

Nutritional supplements, Herbs, Alternative medicine and more…

Wellness & Lifestyle

Nutrition, Diets, Healthy living, Detox, Exercise and Physical Fitness, Sports Fitness and more…

Women’s Health

Relationships, Pregnancy, Birth control, Menopause and more

Home » News

Imaging study shows little difference between poor readers with low IQ and poor readers with high IQ

Article / Review by on September 28, 2011 – 6:47 pmNo Comments

Imaging study shows little difference between poor readers with low IQ and poor readers with high IQ

Last year, Fumiko Hoeft, MD, PhD, authored a study that used sophisticated brain imaging to predict with 90 percent accuracy which teenagers with dyslexia would improve their reading skills over time. Now the Stanford imaging expert has turned her attention to the diagnosis of the learning disability, and she and colleagues have provided “biological evidence that IQ should not be emphasized in the diagnosis of reading abilities.”
Imaging study shows little difference between poor readers with low IQ and poor readers with high IQ
Photo by Marc Samson

As I explain today in a release, schools and psychologists sometimes rely on a child’s IQ to define and diagnose dyslexia: If a child’s reading achievement is below expectation based on IQ, he would be considered dyslexic, while a poor reader with a low IQ would receive some other diagnosis. (And those children not considered dyslexic might not be given access to the proper reading interventions.) But in an imaging study of 131 children – including poor readers with typical IQ, poor readers with low IQ and typical readers with typical IQ – Hoeft and colleagues show that what happened in the brains of poor readers during a reading task was similar regardless of IQ:

In the fMRI analysis, researchers found that both groups of poor readers exhibited significantly reduced activations relative to typical readers in the left inferior parietal lobule and left fusiform gyrus. The researchers also used a sophisticated analysis to determine that the brain patterns of each group of poor readers looked liked those of the other group of poor readers more than 80 percent of the time, and did not often resemble the patterns from the normal readers.

The researchers said that their work, which will appear in an upcoming issue of Psychological Science, indicates that “any child with a reading difficulty, regardless of his or her general level of cognitive abilities (IQ), should be encouraged to seek reading intervention.” And:

Hoeft noted that the results are timely. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, the standard diagnostic guide for mental illnesses and brain disorders, is currently being revised, and there is a proposal to change it so that IQ wouldn’t be taken into consideration when diagnosing dyslexia. (The new version, DSM V, will be released in 2013.) This work, she said, is the “first study reporting biological neuroimaging evidence to support” that change.

More information at: 


About Center for Interdisciplinary Brain Sciences Research (CIBSR) at the Stanford University School of Medicine/ Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

The Center for Interdisciplinary Brain Sciences Research (CIBSR) at the Stanford University School of Medicine is dedicated to research that will improve the lives and well-being of individuals with disorders of the brain. In particular, CIBSR research staff are dedicated to identifying biological and environmental risk factors, understanding disease pathophysiology and developmental outcomes, and developing new treatments for neurodevelopmental, neurogenetic and neuropsychiatric disorders of childhood onset. Our research studies are truly multi/interdisciplinary as they bring together experts from the fields of psychiatry, neurology, psychology, computer science, biostatistics and genetics to explore and seek answers for complex questions related to brain-behavior relationships.

Active research at CIBSR includes:
> Mutlimodal imaging of the brain utilizing anatomical and functional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) and magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS).
> Behavioral, cognitive, and physiological assessment to address questions concerning the influence of biological and environmental factors on outcome.
> The development of new biological and cognitive-behavioral treatments.
> Development of brain image analysis methods and software.

* Information about the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, which also supported the research, is available at
**  The above story is adapted from materials provided by Stanford University School of Medicine 


Stanford school of Medicine logo

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Leave a comment!

Add your comment below, or trackback from your own site. You can also subscribe to these comments via RSS.

Be nice. Keep it clean. Stay on topic. No spam.

You can use these tags:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>