The effect of simulated auditory hallucinations on daily activities in schizophrenia patients

Kiwan Han, Jin Kook Heo, Seung Ok Seo, Mi Yeon Hong, Jung Suk Lee, Young Seok Shin, Jeonghun Ku, Sun I. Kim, Jae Jin Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Auditory hallucinations often influence schizophrenia patients in many aspects. In order to develop effective behavioral interventions for overcoming enduring auditory hallucinations, it is necessary to understand how the annoying symptom affects the daily lives of the patients. This study evaluated the effect of hearing unusual voices on performing the activities of daily life in schizophrenia patients. Methods: Eighteen hallucinating patients, 18 nonhallucinating patients and 20 normal controls performed the virtual daily-life task of packing 8 items for travel under 3 conditions: (1) without unusual voices and without avatars, (2) with unusual voices and without avatars and (3) with unusual voices and with avatars. Task completion time and the number of times the packing list was checked were recorded as a measure of the task performance. Results: When exposed to unusual voices without avatars, hallucinating patients checked the packing list fewer times than nonhallucinating patients, and they required longer to complete the task, as positive and negative symptoms were worse. Subjective responses to unusual voices were stronger in hallucinating patients than in nonhallucinating patients. Conclusions: Daily-life activities of hallucinating patients may be less easily influenced by odd auditory stimuli in a nonsocial situation than those of nonhallucinating patients; however, hallucinating patients may feel more strongly affected by unusual voices. To better evaluate and thereby understand the difficulties faced by hallucinating patients in their daily life, the discrepancies between objective and subjective measures as well as social situations should be taken into consideration.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)352-360
Number of pages9
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2012 Oct

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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