Does anhedonia in schizophrenia reflect faulty memory for subjectively experienced emotions?

Aftercare Research Program, Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, University of California, Los Angeles, 90095, USA.
Journal of Abnormal Psychology (Impact Factor: 4.86). 09/2006; 115(3):496-508. DOI: 10.1037/0021-843X.115.3.496
Source: PubMed


The authors evaluated whether self-reported trait anhedonia in schizophrenia reflects faulty memory, such that patients are capable of experiencing pleasure while engaged in enjoyable activities but underestimate their pleasure in recalling these experiences. Thirty schizophrenia patients and 31 nonpatient control participants rated their emotional responses to pleasant and neutral foods and film clips and completed a surprise recall task for their emotions after a 4-hr delay. Despite reporting elevated trait anhedonia, patients did not significantly differ from control participants in immediate pleasant emotional responses to the stimuli or in delayed recall for these experiences. In-the-moment pleasure and short-term retention for emotional experiences thus appear to be relatively intact in schizophrenia. Alternative explanations for the hedonic deficit in this disorder are discussed.

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    • "Similar emotional responses in both groups. Consummatory pleasure Horan et al. (2006) 30 SCZ outpatients/31 healthy controls. SANS Rated emotional responses to food and film clips then a recall task after 4 hr delay. "
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    ABSTRACT: Anhedonia and amotivation are substantial predictors of poor functional outcomes in people with schizophrenia and often present a formidable barrier to returning to work or building relationships. The Temporal Experience of Pleasure Model proposes constructs which should be considered therapeutic targets for these symptoms in schizophrenia e.g. anticipatory pleasure, memory, executive functions, motivation and behaviours related to the activity. Recent reviews have highlighted the need for a clear evidence base to drive the development of targeted interventions. To review systematically the empirical evidence for each TEP model component and propose evidence-based therapeutic targets for anhedonia and amotivation in schizophrenia. Following PRISMA guidelines, PubMed and PsycInfo were searched using the terms "schizophrenia" and "anhedonia". Studies were included if they measured anhedonia and participants had a diagnosis of schizophrenia. The methodology, measures and main findings from each study were extracted and critically summarised for each TEP model construct. 80 independent studies were reviewed and executive functions, emotional memory and the translation of motivation into actions are highlighted as key deficits with a strong evidence base in people with schizophrenia. However, there are many relationships that are unclear because the empirical work is limited by over-general tasks and measures. Promising methods for research which have more ecological validity include experience sampling and behavioural tasks assessing motivation. Specific adaptations to Cognitive Remediation Therapy, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and the utilisation of mobile technology to enhance representations and emotional memory are recommended for future development. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V.
    Schizophrenia Research 09/2015; DOI:10.1016/j.schres.2015.08.013 · 3.92 Impact Factor
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    • "chanisms result in difficulty creating , sustaining , and / or retrieving representations of past pleasurable experiences to motivate goal - directed behavior ( Pizzagalli , 2010 ) . A large body of work in the literature supports that , while " in - the - moment " responses to rewards ( i . e . , consummatory pleasure ) may be relatively intact ( Horan et al . , 2006 ; Mote et al . , 2014a , b ) , people with schizophrenia or at high risk ( Schlosser et al . , 2014 ) have difficulty anticipating positive events , and the reduced anticipatory pleasure is related to SA and other negative symptoms ( Gard et al . , 2007 ; Hooker et al . , 2014 ) . On the other hand , reduced consummatory pleasure in sch"
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    ABSTRACT: Social anhedonia (SA) is a debilitating characteristic of schizophrenia, a common feature in individuals at psychosis-risk, and a vulnerability for developing schizophrenia-spectrum disorders. Prior work (Hooker et al., 2014) revealed neural deficits in the ventral lateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC) when processing positive social cues in a community sample of people with high SA. Lower VLPFC neural activity was related to more severe self-reported schizophrenia-spectrum symptoms as well as the exacerbation of symptoms after social stress. In the current study, psycho-physiological interaction (PPI) analysis was applied to further investigate the neural mechanisms mediated by the VLPFC during emotion processing. PPI analysis revealed that, compared to low SA controls, participants with high SA exhibited reduced connectivity between the VLPFC and the motor cortex, the inferior parietal and the posterior temporal regions when viewing socially positive (relative to neutral) emotions. Across all participants, VLPFC connectivity correlated with behavioral and self-reported measures of attentional control, emotion management, and reward processing. Our results suggest that impairments to the VLPFC mediated neural circuitry underlie the cognitive and emotional deficits associated with social anhedonia, and may serve as neural targets for prevention and treatment of schizophrenia-spectrum disorders.
    Frontiers in Human Neuroscience 08/2015; 9. DOI:10.3389/fnhum.2015.00469 · 3.63 Impact Factor
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    • "In the last two decades, a significant research literature has developed surrounding a " paradox " in emotional functioning in schizophrenia. This paradox lies in the fact that although individuals with schizophrenia often self-report " normal " responses to emotional stimuli while experiencing them in the moment (Aghevli et al., 2003; Gard et al., 2007; Hempel et al., 2005; Herbener et al., 2008; Horan et al., 2006), they tend to report less enjoyment when describing noncurrent emotions, via trait questionnaires , interviews using a retrospective or prospective format, and experience sampling studies assessing past or future pleasure (Gard et al., 2007; Herbener et al., 2007; Horan et al., 2006; Pizzagalli, 2010). Recently, Strauss and Gold (2012) questioned whether there is an emotion paradox in schizophrenia at all, and suggested, based on the accessibility model of emotional memory developed by Robinson and Clore (2002), that differences between current and noncurrent reports about emotional experience are normative as they theorize that emotion self-reports typically rely on different types of information. "
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    ABSTRACT: The anhedonia paradox has been a topic of ongoing study in schizophrenia. Previous research has found that schizophrenia patients report less enjoyment from various activities when compared to their healthy counterparts; however, the two groups appear to have similar in-the-moment emotional ratings of these events (Gard et al., 2007; Herbener et al., 2007; Horan et al., 2006). This study examined these in-the-moment experiences further, by assessing whether they differed between social and non-social experiences. The data were collected from 38 individuals with schizophrenia and 53 matched healthy controls in the greater Chicago area. In-the-moment emotional experience was measured by self-reported arousal and valence ratings for social and non-social stimuli taken from the International Affective Picture System (IAPS). Clinical ratings for patients were gathered by the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale. A series of ANOVAs revealed that controls were more aroused by the social than nonsocial unpleasant stimuli, whereas patients did not show this distinction. Further, regression analyses revealed that negative symptom severity uniquely predicted lower arousal responses to unpleasant social, but not nonsocial, stimuli. Our results indicate that both subject and stimulus factors appear to contribute to differences in emotional responses in individuals with schizophrenia.
    04/2014; 218(1-2). DOI:10.1016/j.psychres.2014.03.039
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