Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Addict Behav. 2012 Jan;37(1):67-72. doi: 10.1016/j.addbeh.2011.08.012. Epub 2011 Sep 8.

Effects of cigarette smoking status on delay discounting in schizophrenia and healthy controls.

Author information

Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada.



Delay discounting is a measure of future-oriented decision-making and impulsivity. Cigarette smoking is associated with rapid discounting of the value of delayed outcomes. In schizophrenia, however, cigarette smoking improves certain neurocognitive impairments associated with the disorder which may explain the high smoking rates in this population. This study examined the relationship between cigarette smoking and delay discounting in schizophrenia and control participants.


A total of N=130 participants, including those with schizophrenia (n=68) and healthy controls (n=62) were assessed on the Kirby Delay Discounting Task and compared across smoking status (smokers; non-smokers) and smoking history (current, former; never smokers).


Smokers exhibited higher discounting rates (i.e., were more impulsive) than non-smokers of the same diagnostic group. Current and former smokers with schizophrenia exhibited similar and significantly higher discounting rates than never smokers, suggesting that in schizophrenia delay discounting is a trait-dependent phenomenon independent of current cigarette smoking. Consistent with previous studies, there was a trend for higher discounting rates in control current smokers compared to control former and never smokers.


Smokers with and without schizophrenia have higher rates of delay discounting than non-smokers. However, in schizophrenia, rapid delay discounting appears to be a trait associated with having ever been a smoker (i.e., current and former smoking).

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Support Center