Thomas E. Armstrong

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A large body of research has demonstrated that affective disorders are characterized by attentional biases for emotional stimuli. However, this research relies heavily on manual reaction time (RT) measures that cannot fully delineate the time course and components of attentional bias. Eye tracking technology, which allows relatively direct and continuous(More)
Although facial expressions are thought to vary in their functional impact on perceivers, experimental demonstration of the differential effects of facial expressions on behavior are lacking. In the present study, we examined the effects of exposure to facial expressions on visual search efficiency. Participants (n = 31) searched for a target in a 12(More)
BACKGROUND Although an attentional bias for threat has been implicated in generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), evidence supporting such a bias has been inconsistent. This study examines whether exposure to different emotional content modulates attention disengagement and impairs the perception of subsequently presented nonemotional targets in GAD. METHODS(More)
Pavlovian conditioning paradigms have revealed fear learning tendencies that may be implicated in the etiology and maintenance of anxiety disorders. Given the prominence of disgust in certain anxiety disorders, it may be fruitful to study disgust learning in addition to fear learning. The present study utilized eye tracking to examine the effects of disgust(More)
The present study examines the extent to which attentional biases in contamination fear commonly observed in obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) are specific to disgust or fear cues, as well as the components of attention involved. Eye tracking was used to provide greater sensitivity and specificity than afforded by traditional reaction time measures of(More)
The present study examines the association between disgust sensitivity (DS) and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) symptoms in two non-clinical samples. Findings from Study 1 (n=270) revealed a significant association between DS and OCD symptoms even after controlling for negative affect and anxiety sensitivity. Subsequent analysis also revealed a specific(More)
The present study examined the effect of a disgust mood induction on self-reported distress during exposure to 5 stimuli with increasing potential for contagion in a public restroom among contamination fearful individuals. Participants were 36 adults identified as high in contamination fear (HCF) and 47 adults identified as low in contamination fear (LCF)(More)
BACKGROUND Although several studies have documented an attentional bias toward threat in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), the nature of this bias has not been clearly delineated. The present study utilized eye tracking technology to delineate the time course and components of attentional bias for threat cues in combat-related PTSD. METHODS Veterans(More)
Recent research suggests that an attentional bias toward threat may play a causal role in obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) with contamination concerns. However, the attentional components involved in this bias, as well as its behavioral correlates, remain unclear. In the present study, eye movements were recorded in individuals high and low in(More)
Although an attentional bias for threat-relevant cues has been theorized in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), to date empirical demonstration of this phenomenon has been at best inconsistent. Furthermore, the nature of this bias in PTSD has not been clearly delineated. In the present study, veterans with PTSD (n = 20), trauma-exposed veterans without(More)