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Original Research ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Psychiatry | doi: 10.3389/fpsyt.2018.00759

Decision-making deficits in female college students with anorexia nervosa symptoms: Iowa gambling task and prospect valence learning model

 Eunchan Na1, Bitna Kang1 and  Myung-Sun Kim1*
  • 1Sungshin Women's University, South Korea

This study investigated deficits in decision-making ability in female college students with anorexia nervosa (AN) symptoms using the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT) and the prospect valence learning (PVL) model. Based on scores on the Korean version of the Eating Attitude Test-26 (KEAT-26), subjects were assigned to either the nonclinical AN (nAN) group (n = 42) or the control group (n = 43). The nAN group exhibited significantly lower total net scores and block net scores on the third, fourth, and fifth blocks of the IGT than did the control group. The nAN group selected cards significantly more often from the disadvantageous A and B decks and less often from the advantageous D deck than did the control group. In addition, the block net scores of the nAN group did not differ across the five blocks, whereas those of the control group increased as the trials progressed. There was a significant negative correlation between IGT total net score and total score on the KEAT-26. The nAN group had significantly lower values than the control group on the learning and response consistency parameters of the PVL model. These results indicate that female college students with AN symptoms have deficits in decision-making ability, and that these deficits are related to difficulties in remembering experience obtained from earlier trials and applying it to later trials. These difficulties further lead them to make decisions randomly. A deficit in decision-making ability could serve as a trait marker for AN.

Keywords: Anorexia nerviosa, Eating Disorder, Decision - making, Iowa Gamble Task, Prospect valence learning model

Received: 13 Oct 2018; Accepted: 20 Dec 2018.

Edited by:

Qinghua He, Southwest University, China

Reviewed by:

Paulo J. Cunha, University of São Paulo, Brazil
Wan-Sen Yan, Guizhou Medical University (GMU), China  

Copyright: © 2018 Na, Kang and Kim. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Prof. Myung-Sun Kim, Sungshin Women's University, Seongbuk District, 136-742, South Korea, kimms@sungshin.ac.kr