Self-reported Ambivalence in Schizophrenia and Associations With Negative Mood

The Journal of nervous and mental disease (Impact Factor: 1.69). 01/2014; 202(1):70-3. DOI: 10.1097/NMD.0000000000000073
Source: PubMed


One instrument potentially useful for schizophrenia research is the Revised Schizotypal Ambivalence Scale (rSAmb). However, previous research has not examined the construct validity of this instrument in people with schizophrenia. In the current study, people with schizophrenia-spectrum disorders (n = 47) and bipolar disorder (BPD; n = 19) completed the rSAmb along with current symptom and other clinical data. As a group, the people with schizophrenia/schizoaffective disorder reported significantly less ambivalence on the rSAmb than did the people with BPD. In addition, the rSAmb was not significantly related to any schizophrenia symptom (all correlations < 0.15). Instead, the rSAmb was significantly associated with negative mood symptoms in the past week, a diagnosis of schizoaffective disorder rather than schizophrenia, and the number of negative terms used in speech. These results suggest that the rSAmb may be associated with negative mood and not with schizophrenia, although systematic examination of larger cohorts is warranted.

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    • "Within the schizophrenia sample task ambivalence was strongly associated with current emotional state and generally unrelated to schizophrenia symptoms as measured by the SANS/SAPS. Results are consistent with recent evidence that self-reported questionnaireassessed ambivalence in schizophrenia-spectrum disorders is associated with current negative mood but not with schizophrenia symptoms (Docherty et al., 2014). These results should be interpreted cautiously, however: SANS/SAPS scores are based on interviewer ratings, while emotional state and task measures ultimately rely on self-report. "
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    ABSTRACT: It remains unclear whether ambivalence reflects genetic liability for schizophrenia-spectrum disorders. This study examined whether task-measured ambivalence is 1) increased in schizophrenia/schizoaffective disorder, 2) significantly associated with schizophrenia symptoms, and/or 3) increased in first-degree biological relatives of probands. Consistent with previous research, ambivalence was elevated in schizophrenia/schizoaffective probands and significantly related to current emotional state, but not to symptoms. Ambivalence was not elevated in relatives, suggesting that it may be unrelated to genetic liability. These results suggest that emotional state may differentially influences ambivalence across groups. Future research would benefit from examination of this question in a larger cohort.
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    ABSTRACT: Ambivalence is an important facet of pathology that has received limited attention despite its importance in understanding negative emotionality within schizophrenia spectrum disorders. Central to understanding the role of ambivalence in schizophrenia is characterizing its manifestation within schizotypal individuals-those with the purported genetic liability for schizophrenia. The present study used the Schizotypal Ambivalence Scale (SAS) to examine the nature of ambivalence. An exploratory factor analysis of SAS scores revealed three factors: interpersonal, indecision, and contradictory feelings of ambivalence. Group differences in SAS scores were found such that psychometrically defined schizotypal individuals reported higher levels of ambivalence than controls, and different schizotypy traits exhibited different relationships with SAS factors and quality of life. The inclusion of implicit and explicit measures of positive and negative attitudes revealed that individuals with schizotypy might lack insight into their affective experiences as suggested by the incongruence between our explicit and implicit measures of social attitudes. As hypothesized, the Schizotypal Personality Questionnaire trait dimensions associated with greater SAS ambivalence and the different trait dimensions of schizotypy showed both common and disparate relationships with the ambivalence factors. The current results support the notion that schizotypal ambivalence is a multifaceted construct that not only is affective but also reflects broader processes that dynamically interact with one another to influence functional outcomes.
    Journal of Nervous & Mental Disease 09/2014; 202(11). DOI:10.1097/NMD.0000000000000196 · 1.69 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: When predicting future emotions we use inaccurate biases which rely on our most salient and recent experiences. In schizophrenia, there appears to be a specific deficit in this anticipatory process which is associated with reduced motivation and engagement. The nature of this deficit and how it differs to the general population is unclear. This study introduces a new task examining the discrepancy between anticipated and experienced pleasure and investigates its potential usefulness to characterise the pleasure deficit in people with schizophrenia. Forty-eight healthy controls and 50 individuals with schizophrenia completed the Components of Pleasure Task (COP) which uses a range of images to generate anticipatory and experiential ratings. Participants also completed measures of mood and symptoms. Individuals with schizophrenia had a larger anticipatory-consummatory discrepancy score. This was due to under-anticipating highly pleasant stimuli and over-anticipating low pleasantness stimuli. People with schizophrenia are blunted compared to controls when anticipating stimuli, considering highly and lowly rated stimuli alike. A greater discrepancy between anticipated and experienced pleasure may contribute to negative symptoms such as poor motivation and social withdrawal. Reducing the discrepancy between experienced and anticipated pleasure may be a target for interventions aiming to reduce negative symptoms. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
    Psychiatry Research 07/2015; DOI:10.1016/j.psychres.2015.05.091 · 2.47 Impact Factor