A dimensional approach to the phantom vibration and ringing syndrome during medical internship

Yu Hsuan Lin, Ching Yen Chen, Peng Li, Sheng-Hsuan Lin*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

21 Scopus citations

Abstract

Phantom vibrations and ringing of mobile phones are prevalent hallucinations in the general population. They might be considered as a "normal" brain mechanism. The aim of this study was to determine if a dimensional approach to identify individuals suffering from these hallucinations was more important than a categorical approach. A prospective longitudinal study of 74 medical interns (male: 46, mean age: 24.8±1.2) was carried out using repeated investigations of the severity of phantom vibrations and ringing, as well as accompanying symptoms of anxiety and depression as measured by Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI) and the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) before, at the 3rd, 6th, and 12th month during internship, and 2 weeks after internship. We utilized the cognitive and somatic subscales of the BDI, as well as the subjective, somatic and panic subscales of the BAI. The correlation between phantom vibration and ringing was lowest before the internship but became moderate during the internship and high 2 weeks after it. Compared to interns with subclinical phantom ringing and vibrations, interns with severe phantom vibrations and ringing had higher subjective and somatic anxiety and somatic depressive scores at any time point throughout the internship. Only interns with severe phantom ringing had more cognitive/affective depression. A dimensional approach to the phantom vibration and ringing syndrome is a powerful way to identify their correlation, as well as their association with anxiety and depression.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1254-1258
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Psychiatric Research
Volume47
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2013

Keywords

  • Hallucination
  • Medical intern
  • Phantom ringing
  • Phantom vibration

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