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Cogn Neuropsychiatry. 2007 May;12(3):213-21.

Delay discounting in schizophrenia.

Author information

1
Maryland Psychiatric Research Center, University of Maryland, Baltimore, MD, USA. e.heerey@bangor.ac.uk

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

It is well known that individuals with schizophrenia have dopaminergic abnormalities as well as memory-related difficulties, both of which are associated with impulsive decision making. We used a delay discounting measure to test the degree to which patients make future-oriented decisions.

METHODS:

42 patients with schizophrenia and 29 healthy participants completed a delay discounting measure along with tests of cognitive function and, in patients, symptom ratings.

RESULTS:

Patients discounted more steeply than did comparison participants. Discounting among patients related to memory capacity and tended to relate inversely to negative symptoms.

CONCLUSIONS:

The impulsive decision making evidenced by patients suggests that they may be prone to choosing immediate over long-term rewards, even when their interests are better served by choosing the latter. Improving cognitive function may enhance their ability to make future-oriented decisions.

PMID:
17453902
PMCID:
PMC3746343
DOI:
10.1080/13546800601005900
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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