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Alexithymia

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Geoffrey Ird – One of the best experts on this subject based on the ideXlab platform.

  • Alexithymia and autism diagnostic assessments evidence from twins at genetic risk of autism and adults with anorexia nervosa
    Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 2020
    Co-Authors: Geoffrey Ird, Caroline Catmu, Hannah Hobso, Heathe Westwood, Jane Rebecca Conway, Fiona Mcewe, Emma Colve

    Abstract:

    Abstract Background Alexithymia, a difficulty identifying and communicating one’s own emotions, affects socio-emotional processes, such as emotion recognition and empathy. Co-occurring Alexithymia is prevalent in Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and underlies some socio-emotional difficulties usually attributed to autism. Socio-emotional abilities are examined during behavioural diagnostic assessments of autism, yet the effect of Alexithymia on these assessments is not known. This study aimed to examine the associations between Alexithymia and Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) assessment scores. Method Two previously collected samples of ADOS assessments were used to examine the relationship between Alexithymia and ADOS scores. Participants included 96 women with anorexia, and 147 adolescents who were either high in autistic symptoms, or whose twin had high autistic symptoms. We examined 1) the impact of Alexithymia on meeting the criteria for autism/ASD, 2) correlations between Alexithymia and ADOS subscales, and 3) whether Alexithymia predicted scores on specific ADOS items, selected a priori based on existing literature. Results In the adolescent group, parent-reported (but not self-reported) Alexithymia correlated with both ADOS sub-scales, predicted scores on ADOS items, and predicted meeting clinical cut-offs for an ASD/autism diagnosis. Few associations were observed in the anorexic sample between self-reported Alexithymia and ADOS subscale and item scores, but the presence of Alexithymia predicted the likelihood of meeting diagnostic criteria for autism/ASD in this sample. Conclusions Alexithymia does show relationships with ADOS assessment scores. We discuss potential clinical and research implications, particularly in studies of autism where the ADOS is often the only diagnostic measure used.

  • Alexithymia and autism diagnostic assessments evidence from twins at genetic risk of autism and adults with anorexia nervosa
    Post-Print, 2020
    Co-Authors: Geoffrey Ird, Caroline Catmu, Hannah Hobso, Heathe Westwood, Jane Rebecca Conway, Fiona Mcewe, Emma Colve

    Abstract:

    Alexithymia, a difficulty identifying and communicating one’s own emotions, affects socio-emotional processes, such as emotion recognition and empathy. Co-occurring Alexithymia is prevalent in Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and underlies some socio-emotional difficulties usually attributed to autism. Socio-emotional abilities are examined during behavioural diagnostic assessments of autism, yet the effect of Alexithymia on these assessments is not known. This study aimed to examine the associations between Alexithymia and Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) assessment scores.

  • the psychophysiological mechanisms of Alexithymia in autism spectrum disorder
    Autism, 2018
    Co-Authors: Sebastia Gaigg, Geoffrey Ird, Anna S F Cornell

    Abstract:

    Accumulating evidence indicates that co-occurring Alexithymia underlies several facets of the social-emotional difficulties common in individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The mechanisms involved, however, remain poorly understood because measuring Alexithymia relies heavily on self-report. To address this issue, carefully matched groups of individuals with ASD and comparison participants rated 70 emotion-inducing pictures on subjectively experienced arousal while skin conductance responses were monitored objectively. The results demonstrated reliable correlations between these subjective and objective measures, and in both groups around 25% of individual differences in this correlation (i.e. in emotion-relevant interoception) were accounted for by self-reported Alexithymia. In the context of the wider literature, this suggests that Alexithymia involves a disruption in how physiological arousal modulates the subjective experience of feelings in those with and without a diagnosis of ASD. Since mindfulness based therapies foster greater awareness of thoughts, feelings and bodily sensations, the findings also have implications for how the symptoms and consequences of Alexithymia (e.g., anxiety) might be ameliorated.

Graeme J Taylo – One of the best experts on this subject based on the ideXlab platform.

  • taxometric analysis of the toronto structured interview for Alexithymia further evidence that Alexithymia is a dimensional construct
    Assessment, 2019
    Co-Authors: Kateryna V Keefe, Graeme J Taylo, James D A Parke, Michael R Agby

    Abstract:

    Alexithymia is a clinically relevant personality construct characterized by difficulties identifying and describing feelings, externally oriented thinking, and impoverished imaginal processes. Previous taxometric investigations provided evidence that Alexithymia is best conceptualized as a continuous dimension rather than a discrete type, at least when assessed with the self-report 20-Item Toronto Alexithymia Scale. The aim of the current study was to test the categorical versus dimensional structure of Alexithymia using the recently developed Toronto Structured Interview for Alexithymia. Three nonredundant taxometric procedures (MAXCOV, MAMBAC, and L-Mode) were performed on the Toronto Structured Interview for Alexithymia subscale scores from a multinational sample of 842 adults. All taxometric procedures produced unambiguously dimensional solutions, providing further evidence that the core Alexithymia features are continuously distributed in the population. Discussion focuses on the theoretical, assessm…

  • what s in the name Alexithymia a commentary on affective agnosia expansion of the Alexithymia construct and a new opportunity to integrate and extend freud s legacy
    Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, 2016
    Co-Authors: Graeme J Taylo, Michael R Agby, James D A Parke

    Abstract:

    The recent proposal of a new type of agnosia termed ‘affective agnosia’ extends Freud’s legacy and captures the concept of not knowing one’s own emotions. This concept links well with the theory of levels of emotional awareness and maps onto a hierarchical model of neural substrates of emotional experience, but does not encompass the pensee operatoire component of the Alexithymia construct. Moreover, identifying agnosia and anomia subtypes, which connotes a categorical conceptualization of Alexithymia, is inconsistent with the dimensional nature of the construct. We describe a more widely accepted definition of Alexithymia, and argue that although aptly descriptive, the concept of affective agnosia does not advance the theory, measurement, and treatment of Alexithymia. A review of Alexithymia literature indicates that impairment in the mental representation of emotions has been a central aspect of Alexithymia theory since the concept was introduced, and guided the development of the Toronto Alexithymia Scale and other measures of the construct. Moreover, techniques to enhance mentalization of emotions have been used by psychotherapists for several decades.

  • latent structure of the Alexithymia construct a taxometric investigation
    Psychological Assessment, 2008
    Co-Authors: James D A Parke, Kateryna V Keefe, Graeme J Taylo, Michael R Agby

    Abstract:

    Despite a wealth of research on the validity of Alexithymia and its association with a number of common medical and psychiatric disorders, the fundamental question of whether Alexithymia is best conceptualized as a dimensional or categorical construct remains unresolved. In the current investigation, taxometric analysis is used to examine the nature of the latent structure of Alexithymia. Several nonredundant taxometric procedures were performed with item sets from the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (R. M. Bagby, J. D. A. Parker, & G. J. Taylor, 1994) as indicators. These procedures were applied separately in large community (n = 1,933) and undergraduate (n = 1,948) samples and in a smaller sample of psychiatric outpatients (n = 302). The results across various taxometric procedures and the different samples provide strong support that Alexithymia is a dimensional construct. Some theoretical implications of these findings for research on the Alexithymia construct are discussed.

Michael R Agby – One of the best experts on this subject based on the ideXlab platform.

  • taxometric analysis of the toronto structured interview for Alexithymia further evidence that Alexithymia is a dimensional construct
    Assessment, 2019
    Co-Authors: Kateryna V Keefe, Graeme J Taylo, James D A Parke, Michael R Agby

    Abstract:

    Alexithymia is a clinically relevant personality construct characterized by difficulties identifying and describing feelings, externally oriented thinking, and impoverished imaginal processes. Previous taxometric investigations provided evidence that Alexithymia is best conceptualized as a continuous dimension rather than a discrete type, at least when assessed with the self-report 20-Item Toronto Alexithymia Scale. The aim of the current study was to test the categorical versus dimensional structure of Alexithymia using the recently developed Toronto Structured Interview for Alexithymia. Three nonredundant taxometric procedures (MAXCOV, MAMBAC, and L-Mode) were performed on the Toronto Structured Interview for Alexithymia subscale scores from a multinational sample of 842 adults. All taxometric procedures produced unambiguously dimensional solutions, providing further evidence that the core Alexithymia features are continuously distributed in the population. Discussion focuses on the theoretical, assessm…

  • what s in the name Alexithymia a commentary on affective agnosia expansion of the Alexithymia construct and a new opportunity to integrate and extend freud s legacy
    Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, 2016
    Co-Authors: Graeme J Taylo, Michael R Agby, James D A Parke

    Abstract:

    The recent proposal of a new type of agnosia termed ‘affective agnosia’ extends Freud’s legacy and captures the concept of not knowing one’s own emotions. This concept links well with the theory of levels of emotional awareness and maps onto a hierarchical model of neural substrates of emotional experience, but does not encompass the pensee operatoire component of the Alexithymia construct. Moreover, identifying agnosia and anomia subtypes, which connotes a categorical conceptualization of Alexithymia, is inconsistent with the dimensional nature of the construct. We describe a more widely accepted definition of Alexithymia, and argue that although aptly descriptive, the concept of affective agnosia does not advance the theory, measurement, and treatment of Alexithymia. A review of Alexithymia literature indicates that impairment in the mental representation of emotions has been a central aspect of Alexithymia theory since the concept was introduced, and guided the development of the Toronto Alexithymia Scale and other measures of the construct. Moreover, techniques to enhance mentalization of emotions have been used by psychotherapists for several decades.

  • latent structure of the Alexithymia construct a taxometric investigation
    Psychological Assessment, 2008
    Co-Authors: James D A Parke, Kateryna V Keefe, Graeme J Taylo, Michael R Agby

    Abstract:

    Despite a wealth of research on the validity of Alexithymia and its association with a number of common medical and psychiatric disorders, the fundamental question of whether Alexithymia is best conceptualized as a dimensional or categorical construct remains unresolved. In the current investigation, taxometric analysis is used to examine the nature of the latent structure of Alexithymia. Several nonredundant taxometric procedures were performed with item sets from the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (R. M. Bagby, J. D. A. Parker, & G. J. Taylor, 1994) as indicators. These procedures were applied separately in large community (n = 1,933) and undergraduate (n = 1,948) samples and in a smaller sample of psychiatric outpatients (n = 302). The results across various taxometric procedures and the different samples provide strong support that Alexithymia is a dimensional construct. Some theoretical implications of these findings for research on the Alexithymia construct are discussed.