Objective: To study the contribution of executive function to abnormal recognition of facial expressions of emotion in schizophrenia patients.
Methods: Abnormal recognition of facial expressions of emotion was assayed according to Japanese and Caucasian facial expressions of emotion (JACFEE), Wisconsin card sorting test (WCST), positive and negative symptom scale, and Hamilton anxiety and depression scale, respectively, in 88 paranoid schizophrenia patients and 75 healthy volunteers.
Results: Patients scored higher on the Positive and Negative Symptom Scale and the Hamilton Anxiety and Depression Scales, displayed lower JACFEE recognition accuracies and poorer WCST performances. The JACFEE recognition accuracy of contempt and disgust was negatively correlated with the negative symptom scale score while the recognition accuracy of fear was positively with the positive symptom scale score and the recognition accuracy of surprise was negatively with the general psychopathology score in patients. Moreover, the WCST could predict the JACFEE recognition accuracy of contempt, disgust, and sadness in patients, and the perseverative errors negatively predicted the recognition accuracy of sadness in healthy volunteers. The JACFEE recognition accuracy of sadness could predict the WCST categories in paranoid schizophrenia patients.
Conclusion: Recognition accuracy of social-/moral emotions, such as contempt, disgust and sadness is related to the executive function in paranoid schizophrenia patients, especially when regarding sadness.
- Executive function
- Japanese and Caucasian facial expressions of emotion
- Paranoid schizophrenia
- Wisconsin card sorting test