Journal Article

Correlates of the Affective Impact of Auditory Hallucinations in Psychotic Disorders

David L. Copolov, Andrew Mackinnon and Tom Trauer

in Schizophrenia Bulletin

Published on behalf of Maryland Psychiatric Research Center

Volume 30, issue 1, pages 163-171
Published in print January 2004 | ISSN: 0586-7614
Published online January 2004 | e-ISSN: 1745-1701 | DOI:
Correlates of the Affective Impact of Auditory Hallucinations in Psychotic Disorders

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While many who hear auditory hallucinations (AHs) experience them as unpleasant, some do not. Little is known about the correlates of AHs that are not unpleasant, or of the characteristics of those who hear them. To better understand this symptom, we used a comprehensive structured interview schedule to study 199 subjects who had experienced AHs. Subjects' responses to AHs were combined into two indexes: one assessing total affective impact and the other assessing the affective direction (positive or negative). Subjects who had grandiose delusions experienced their AHs more positively. AHs that were more frequent, lasted longer, and were louder were experienced more negatively. AHs heard in the second person and those related to people with whom the subjects had personal relationships were more positive than those heard in the third person. Many other aspects of AHs were unrelated to total affective impact or direction. It is argued that the positive evaluation of voices by subjects requires greater attention than it has received previously. Implications for assessment, clinical practice, and research are discussed.

Keywords: Auditory hallucinations; psychosis; affect

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Child and Adolescent Psychiatry

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