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Social anxiety disorder women easily recognize fearfull, sad and happy faces: the influence of gender.
J Psychiatr Res. 2010 Jun; 44(8):535-40.JP

Abstract

BACKGROUND

It has been suggested that individuals with social anxiety disorder (SAD) are exaggeratedly concerned about approval and disapproval by others. Therefore, we assessed the recognition of facial expressions by individuals with SAD, in an attempt to overcome the limitations of previous studies.

METHODS

The sample was formed by 231 individuals (78 SAD patients and 153 healthy controls). All individuals were treatment naïve, aged 18-30 years and with similar socioeconomic level. Participants judged which emotion (happiness, sadness, disgust, anger, fear, and surprise) was presented in the facial expression of stimuli displayed on a computer screen. The stimuli were manipulated in order to depict different emotional intensities, with the initial image being a neutral face (0%) and, as the individual moved on across images, the expressions increased their emotional intensity until reaching the total emotion (100%). The time, accuracy, and intensity necessary to perform judgments were evaluated.

RESULTS

The groups did not show statistically significant differences in respect to the number of correct judgments or to the time necessary to respond. However, women with SAD required less emotional intensity to recognize faces displaying fear (p=0.002), sadness (p=0.033) and happiness (p=0.002), with no significant differences for the other emotions or men with SAD.

CONCLUSIONS

The findings suggest that women with SAD are hypersensitive to threat-related and approval-related social cues. Future studies investigating the neural basis of the impaired processing of facial emotion in SAD using functional neuroimaging would be desirable and opportune.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Neuroscience and Behavior, Ribeirão Preto Medical School, University of São Paulo, Brazil.No affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

19962717

Citation

Arrais, Kátia C., et al. "Social Anxiety Disorder Women Easily Recognize Fearfull, Sad and Happy Faces: the Influence of Gender." Journal of Psychiatric Research, vol. 44, no. 8, 2010, pp. 535-40.
Arrais KC, Machado-de-Sousa JP, Trzesniak C, et al. Social anxiety disorder women easily recognize fearfull, sad and happy faces: the influence of gender. J Psychiatr Res. 2010;44(8):535-40.
Arrais, K. C., Machado-de-Sousa, J. P., Trzesniak, C., Santos Filho, A., Ferrari, M. C., Osório, F. L., Loureiro, S. R., Nardi, A. E., Hetem, L. A., Zuardi, A. W., Hallak, J. E., & Crippa, J. A. (2010). Social anxiety disorder women easily recognize fearfull, sad and happy faces: the influence of gender. Journal of Psychiatric Research, 44(8), 535-40. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpsychires.2009.11.003
Arrais KC, et al. Social Anxiety Disorder Women Easily Recognize Fearfull, Sad and Happy Faces: the Influence of Gender. J Psychiatr Res. 2010;44(8):535-40. PubMed PMID: 19962717.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Social anxiety disorder women easily recognize fearfull, sad and happy faces: the influence of gender. AU - Arrais,Kátia C, AU - Machado-de-Sousa,João Paulo, AU - Trzesniak,Clarissa, AU - Santos Filho,Alaor, AU - Ferrari,Maria Cecília F, AU - Osório,Flávia L, AU - Loureiro,Sonia R, AU - Nardi,Antonio E, AU - Hetem,Luiz Alberto B, AU - Zuardi,Antonio W, AU - Hallak,Jaime Eduardo C, AU - Crippa,José Alexandre S, Y1 - 2009/12/04/ PY - 2009/08/28/received PY - 2009/10/27/revised PY - 2009/11/03/accepted PY - 2009/12/8/entrez PY - 2009/12/8/pubmed PY - 2010/8/13/medline SP - 535 EP - 40 JF - Journal of psychiatric research JO - J Psychiatr Res VL - 44 IS - 8 N2 - BACKGROUND: It has been suggested that individuals with social anxiety disorder (SAD) are exaggeratedly concerned about approval and disapproval by others. Therefore, we assessed the recognition of facial expressions by individuals with SAD, in an attempt to overcome the limitations of previous studies. METHODS: The sample was formed by 231 individuals (78 SAD patients and 153 healthy controls). All individuals were treatment naïve, aged 18-30 years and with similar socioeconomic level. Participants judged which emotion (happiness, sadness, disgust, anger, fear, and surprise) was presented in the facial expression of stimuli displayed on a computer screen. The stimuli were manipulated in order to depict different emotional intensities, with the initial image being a neutral face (0%) and, as the individual moved on across images, the expressions increased their emotional intensity until reaching the total emotion (100%). The time, accuracy, and intensity necessary to perform judgments were evaluated. RESULTS: The groups did not show statistically significant differences in respect to the number of correct judgments or to the time necessary to respond. However, women with SAD required less emotional intensity to recognize faces displaying fear (p=0.002), sadness (p=0.033) and happiness (p=0.002), with no significant differences for the other emotions or men with SAD. CONCLUSIONS: The findings suggest that women with SAD are hypersensitive to threat-related and approval-related social cues. Future studies investigating the neural basis of the impaired processing of facial emotion in SAD using functional neuroimaging would be desirable and opportune. SN - 1879-1379 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/19962717/Social_anxiety_disorder_women_easily_recognize_fearfull_sad_and_happy_faces:_the_influence_of_gender_ L2 - https://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S0022-3956(09)00255-6 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -