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Influence Factors for Decision-Making Performance of Suicide Attempters and Suicide Ideators: The Roles of Somatic Markers and Explicit Knowledge

Lingling Wang, Jingmin Li, Hailing Liu, Zhongpeng Wang, , Li An
Published: 14 September 2021

Abstract: Impaired decision-making has been observed in suicide attempters during the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT). Decision-making performance is influenced by somatic markers and explicit knowledge, but it is still unclear of the influencing role on decision-making performance in suicidal individuals. We aimed to investigate whether there is a decision-making deficit in suicide attempters, suicide ideators, as well as the distinct roles of somatic markers and explicit knowledge wherein. Thirteen suicide attempters, 23 suicide ideators, and 19 healthy controls performed the IGT. Both somatic markers (by the skin conductance responses, SCRs) and explicit knowledge (by the subjective experience rating and a list of questions) were recorded. No significant differences were found among the three groups on IGT performance, explicit knowledge, and anticipatory SCRs. IGT Performance of suicide attempters was positively correlated with explicit knowledge index while behavior performance was positively associated with the SCRs in healthy controls. These results indicate that the suicide attempters seem to apply a compensatory strategy by mostly utilizing explicit knowledge to perform normally as healthy controls in the IGT.
Keywords: decision-making / Suicide attempter / Suicide ideator / somatic marker / explicit knowledge

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