Remediation of facial emotion perception in schizophrenia: Concomitant changes in visual attention
Macquarie Centre for Cognitive Science, Macquarie University, Sydney, NSW, 2109, Australia. Schizophrenia Research
(Impact Factor: 3.92).
07/2008; 103(1-3):248-56. DOI: 10.1016/j.schres.2008.04.033
The study examined changes in visual attention in schizophrenia following training with a social-cognitive remediation package designed to improve facial emotion recognition (the Micro-Expression Training Tool; METT). Forty out-patients with schizophrenia were randomly allocated to active training (METT; n=26), or repeated exposure (RE; n=14); all completed an emotion recognition task with concurrent eye movement recording. Emotion recognition accuracy was significantly improved in the METT group, and this effect was maintained after one week. Immediately following training, the METT group directed more eye movements within feature areas of faces (i.e., eyes, nose, mouth) compared to the RE group. The number of fixations directed to feature areas of faces was positively associated with emotion recognition accuracy prior to training. After one week, the differences between METT and RE groups in viewing feature areas of faces were reduced to trends. However, within group analyses of the METT group revealed significantly increased number of fixations to, and dwell time within, feature areas following training which were maintained after one week. These results provide the first evidence that improvements in emotion recognition following METT training are associated with changes in visual attention to the feature areas of emotional faces. These findings support the contribution of visual attention abnormalities to emotion recognition impairment in schizophrenia, and suggest that one mechanism for improving emotion recognition involves re-directing visual attention to relevant features of emotional faces.
Available from: Susan L Rossell
- "rbances . Therefore , remediation techniques which train participants to focus on the correct areas of the face may be beneficial in AN . These techniques have proven useful in other psychiatric conditions such as schizophrenia , with trained individuals demonstrating an improvement in attention to salient facial features and emotion recognition ( Russell et al . , 2008 ; Marsh et al . , 2012 ) . Furthermore , the majority of deficits reported in the current study were specific to the processing of self - images in AN ."
[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Whether individuals with anorexia nervosa (AN) are able to accurately perceive emotions from faces of others is unclear. Furthermore, whether individuals with AN process images of their own face differently to healthy individuals has thus far not been investigated. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate facial affect processing and the processing of one's own face through measures of emotion identification, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and eyetracking.
Twenty-four females with AN and 25 matched healthy control participants were presented with an implicit emotion processing task during fMRI and eyetracking, followed by an explicit emotion identification task.
The AN group were found to 'hyperscan' stimuli and avoided visually attending to salient features of their own face images. RESULTS of the fMRI revealed increased activity to own face stimuli in AN in the right inferior and middle temporal gyri, and right lingual gyrus. AN participants were not found to display emotion identification deficits to the standard emotional face stimuli.
The findings are discussed in terms of increased anxiety to disorder-relevant stimuli in AN. Potential clinical implications are discussed in relation to the use of eyetracking techniques to improve the perception of self in AN.
Available from: Silvia Maria Arcuri
- "One of the ways of coping with stress is to employ strategies. There is evidence that psychological interventions that deal with focusing attention and gaining control over mental experiences such as auditory hallucinations can reduce distress caused by symptoms (Shergill et al., 1998; Russell et al., 2008; Marsh et al., 2010). However, impaired cognitive performance may hamper this effort. "
[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: In this article, we present ideas related to three key aspects of mindfulness training: the regulation of attention via noradrenaline, the importance of working memory and its various components (particularly the central executive and episodic buffer), and the relationship of both of these to mind-wandering. These same aspects of mindfulness training are also involved in the preparation and execution of movement and implicated in the pathophysiology of psychosis. We argue that by moving in a mindful way, there may be an additive effect of training as the two elements of the practice (mindfulness and movement) independently, and perhaps synergistically, engage common underlying systems (the default mode network). We discuss how working with mindful movement may be one route to mindfulness training for individuals who would struggle to sit still to complete the more commonly taught mindfulness practices. Drawing on our clinical experience working with individuals with severe and enduring mental health conditions, we show the real world application of these ideas and how they can be used to help those who are suffering and for whom current treatments are still far from adequate.
Available from: Nicole Frommann
- "happy). Russell et al. (2008) and Marsh et al. (2012) evaluated changes in visual scanpath after applying the remediation program METT, which trains affect recognition via explicit attention-shaping processes. In accordance with the results of our study, improvements in performance were accompanied by changes in the fixation patterns, but both aspects were uncorrelated. "
[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
Schizophrenia patients have impairments in facial affect recognition and display scanpath abnormalities during the visual exploration of faces. These abnormalities are characterized by fewer fixations on salient feature areas and longer fixation durations. The present study investigated whether social-cognitive remediation not only improves performance in facial affect recognition but also normalizes patients' gaze behavior while looking at faces.
Within a 2 × 2-design (group × time), 16 schizophrenia patients and 16 healthy controls performed a facial affect recognition task with concomitant infrared oculography at baseline (T0) and after six weeks (T1). Between the measurements, patients completed the Training of Affect Recognition (TAR) program. The influence of the training on facial affect recognition (percent of correct answers) and gaze behavior (number and mean duration of fixations into salient or non-salient facial areas) was assessed.
In line with former studies, at baseline patients showed poorer facial affect recognition than controls and aberrant scanpaths, and after TAR facial affect recognition was improved. Concomitant with improvements in performance, the number of fixations in feature areas ('mouth') increased while fixations in non-feature areas ('white space') decreased. However, the change in fixation behavior did not correlate with the improvement in performance.
After TAR, patients pay more attention to facial areas that contain information about a displayed emotion. Although this may contribute to the improved performance, the lack of a statistical correlation implies that this factor is not sufficient to explain the underlying mechanism of the treatment effect.
Data provided are for informational purposes only. Although carefully collected, accuracy cannot be guaranteed. The impact factor represents a rough estimation of the journal's impact factor and does not reflect the actual current impact factor. Publisher conditions are provided by RoMEO. Differing provisions from the publisher's actual policy or licence agreement may be applicable.