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The Relationship between Auditory Hallucinations and Spontaneous Fluctuations of Skin Conductance in Schizophrenia

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  29 January 2018

Ruth Cooklin
Department of Mental Health, University College, London, WC1
David Sturgeon
Department of Mental Health, University College
Julian Leff
MRC Social Psychiatry Unit, Outstation: Friern Hospital, Friern Barnet Road, London, N11 3BP


A sample was collected of schizophrenic patients exhibiting nonverbal signs of intermittent auditory hallucinations. A video-tape record was made for each of a session, during which the patient's skin conductance was monitored. Independent raters achieved reasonable agreement on the onset of periods of hallucinatory activity, as judged from non-verbal signs. The skin conductance tracing was scored independently for spontaneous fluctuations. In the 10 patients with satisfactory records the onset of hallucinatory periods was significantly (P <0.01) associated with a rise in the spontaneous fluctuation rate.

Copyright © 1983 The Royal College of Psychiatrists 

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