The Impact of Poor Nonverbal Social Perception on Functional Capacity in Schizophrenia

Chapellier, Victoria; Pavlidou, Anastasia; Maderthaner, Lydia; von Känel, Sofie; Walther, Sebastian (2022). The Impact of Poor Nonverbal Social Perception on Functional Capacity in Schizophrenia. Frontiers in psychology, 13 Frontiers Research Foundation 10.3389/fpsyg.2022.804093

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Background: Nonverbal social perception is the ability to interpret the intentions and dispositions of others by evaluating cues such as facial expressions, body movements, and emotional prosody. Nonverbal social perception plays a key role in social cognition and is fundamental for successful social interactions. Patients with schizophrenia have severe impairments in nonverbal social perception leading to social isolation and withdrawal. Collectively, these aforementioned deficits affect patients’ quality of life. Here, we compare nonverbal social perception in patients with schizophrenia and controls and examine how nonverbal social perception relates to daily functioning.

Methods: We compared nonverbal social perception in 41 stable outpatients with schizophrenia and 30 healthy controls using the Mini Profile of Nonverbal Sensitivity (Mini-PONS). The participants evaluated 64 video clips showing a female actor demonstrating various nonverbal social cues. Participants were asked to choose one of two options that best described the observed scenario. We correlated clinical ratings (Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale, Brief Negative Syndrome Scale), Self-report of Negative Symptoms, and functional assessments (functional capacity and functional outcome) with Mini-PONS scores.

Results: Patients performed significantly poorer in the Mini-PONS compared to controls, suggesting deficits in nonverbal social perception. These deficits were not associated with either positive symptoms or negative symptoms (including self-report). However, impaired nonverbal social perception correlated with distinctive domains of BNSS (mainly avolition and blunted affect), as well as functional capacity and functional outcome in patients.

Conclusion: We demonstrate that nonverbal social perception is impaired in stable outpatients with schizophrenia. Nonverbal social perception is directly related to specific negative symptom domains, functional capacity and functional outcome. These findings underline the importance of nonverbal social perception for patients’ everyday life and call for novel therapeutic approaches to alleviate nonverbal social perception deficits.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

04 Faculty of Medicine > University Psychiatric Services > University Hospital of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Psychiatric Services > University Hospital of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy > Translational Research Center
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Psychiatric Services

Graduate School:

Graduate School for Health Sciences (GHS)

UniBE Contributor:

Chapellier, Victoria Joséphine Bérengère Marie; Pavlidou, Anastasia; Maderthaner, Lydia Verena and Walther, Sebastian

Subjects:

600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health

ISSN:

1664-1078

Publisher:

Frontiers Research Foundation

Language:

English

Submitter:

Victoria Joséphine Bérengère Marie Chapellier

Date Deposited:

08 Mar 2022 16:18

Last Modified:

08 Mar 2022 16:18

Publisher DOI:

10.3389/fpsyg.2022.804093

BORIS DOI:

10.48350/166174

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/166174

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