Introduction: Facial emotion recognition deficits (FERD) are common even in the remitted phase of bipolar disorder (BD). Research regarding FERD in first-degree relatives is inconclusive. This study aimed to assess the facial emotion recognition in remitted patients of bipolar disorder and first-degree relatives(FDR) in comparison with healthy controls. Correlation between FERD and quality of life and socio-occupational functioning was also assessed. Methods: It was an observational, cross-sectional study done at a tertiary hospital in India. Study population (n = 75) included remitted patients of bipolar disorder (n = 27), first-degree relatives of BD patients (FDR) (n = 20) and healthy controls (HC) (n = 28). Facial emotion recognition, social and occupational functioning, and quality of life (QoL) was measured using Tool for Recognition of Emotions in Neuropsychiatric Disorders, Social & Occupational Functioning Assessment Scale and World Health Organization Quality of Life-Bref, respectively, in all the participants. Results: The BD group did significantly worse in facial emotion recognition in comparison to FDR and HC groups (p < 0.001). Emotion recognition of fear, anger, surprise, and happy were most affected. FDR did not vary significantly from HC in facial emotion recognition. Lower scores on facial emotion recognition were associated with lower QoL in the social domain(p = 0.006) and poorer socio- occupational functioning scores (p = 0.01), but it was not significant within the BD group. Conclusion: FERD is seen in remitted patients of bipolar disorder but not in the first -degree relatives. FERD affects social quality of life and functioning. Poorer social functioning in remitted patients of bipolar disorder might be multifactorial and cannot be attributed solely to FERD.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Psychiatry and Mental health