In conclusion, patients with schizophrenia, especially those with prominent negative symptoms, showed deficits in both reward motivation and anticipatory pleasure experience.
J Wang, J Huang, XH Yang, SS Lui, EF Cheung and RC Chan,
Schizophrenia research, Oct 2015
Anhedonia is one of the core negative symptoms of schizophrenia that affect the ultimate outcome of this disorder. It is unclear whether the motivational or the hedonic component of anhedonia is impaired in patients with schizophrenia. This study examined the deficits in motivation and hedonic capacity in patients with schizophrenia using an Effort-based pleasure experience task (E-pet). Twenty-two schizophrenia patients with prominent negative symptoms, 18 schizophrenia patients without prominent negative symptoms and 29 healthy controls participated in the present study. All of them were administered the E-pet task, which required the participants to make decisions on whether to choose a hard or easy task based on probability and reward magnitude. When making the grip effort allocation decision, schizophrenia patients with prominent negative symptoms were significantly less likely to choose a hard task than healthy controls. As the reward magnitude and the estimated reward value increased, unlike healthy controls, schizophrenia patients with prominent negative symptoms did not increase their hard task choices. They were also significantly less likely to choose a hard task than healthy controls in medium and high probability conditions. When anticipating potential rewards, these patients reported significantly less anticipatory pleasure than healthy controls, even when reward probability and magnitude increased. The pleasure experience rating after obtaining the actual reward was positively correlated with two pleasure experience scales in schizophrenia patients. In conclusion, patients with schizophrenia, especially those with prominent negative symptoms, showed deficits in both reward motivation and anticipatory pleasure experience.
i can definitely agree i have a deficit in anticipatory pleasure. I see most tasks just not being worth it. but when i eventually get the will power to do it , it becomes rewarding.
With some tasks it’s hard to see the pleasure especially if they are everyday household tasks. I have to change my sheet and duvet cover etc and have been putting it off for weeks . There is little anticipation of pleasure beyond a clean bed being nicer to sleep in for a few days.
For me it’s even things like going for a bike ride. I can’t see how it’s going to be worth it until I actually get myself to do it. Then I end up enjoying it.
Or a video game. I’ll just look at the game console and think if it’s worth even turning it on to play then I just sit there stuck.
I make plans… I look forward to them for a bit… but then I grow cold on the idea and end up sitting at home…
It is hard getting out and doing things… but once I’m there… I’m pretty glad I did it.
It is so easy for me to talk myself out of stuff… I wish I had a little more stick with it ability.