Fearful faces in schizophrenia - The relationship between patient characteristics and facial affect recognition

Mascha van't Wout*, Annemiek van Dijke, Andre Aleman, Roy P. C. Kessels, Wietske Pijpers, Rene S. Kahn

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

42 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Although schizophrenia has often been associated with deficits in facial affect recognition, it is debated whether the recognition of specific emotions is affected and if these facial affect-processing deficits are related to symptomatology or other patient characteristics. The purpose of the present study was to explore whether particular patient characteristics are associated with the recognition of specific facial expressions in patients with schizophrenia. Sixty-four patients with a DSM-IV diagnosis of schizophrenia were assessed with a computerized test of degraded facial affect recognition. Linear regression analysis showed that, in particular, negative symptoms and male sex were associated with worse recognition of fearful faces. Furthermore, diagnosis of nonparanoid schizophrenia and later age of onset were associated with worse recognition of neutral faces. Findings are explained in the light of a neuroanatomical dysfunction accounting for both negative symptoms, such as reduced emotional expression and social-emotional dysfunction, for which men seem more vulnerable than women.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)758-764
Number of pages7
JournalJOURNAL OF NERVOUS AND MENTAL DISEASE
Volume195
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep-2007

Keywords

  • emotion processing
  • facial affect recognition
  • negative symptoms
  • gender
  • vulnerability
  • DIFFERENTIAL NEURAL RESPONSE
  • EMOTION-RECOGNITION
  • SEX-DIFFERENCES
  • NEGATIVE SYMPTOMS
  • AFFECTIVE PROSODY
  • AFFECT PERCEPTION
  • HUMAN AMYGDALA
  • EXPRESSIONS
  • DEFICITS
  • BRAIN

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