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Title: Responsibility interpretations and safety behaviours in command hallucinations
Author: Harris, Abi
Awarding Body: University of London
Current Institution: Royal Holloway, University of London
Date of Award: 2013
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Knowledge about psychological processes in anxiety disorders has contributed to understanding psychosis. Previous research has shown that safety behaviours and heightened responsibility beliefs are prevalent in people experiencing psychosis. Safety behaviours have been investigated in relation to a range of symptoms of psychosis, but not specifically in relation to command hallucinations. The study aimed to investigate responsibility interpretations and safety behaviours in people experiencing command and non-command auditory hallucinations. The study employed a cross-sectional design with two clinical groups: people experiencing command hallucinations (n = 18) and people experiencing non-command auditory hallucinations (n = 30). Both groups were drawn from a clinical population of people experiencing an acute psychotic episode. Use of safety behaviours and frequency of high responsibility interpretations of the voice-hearing experience were measured using a semi-structured interview and a questionnaire, respectively. Other variables were also measured using questionnaires, including beliefs about voices, anxiety, depression, severity of auditory hallucinations and OCD symptoms. It was found that people experiencing command hallucinations used safety behaviours to a greater extent and made high responsibility interpretations of their voice-hearing experience more frequently than people experiencing non-command hallucinations. The frequency of high responsibility interpretations was positively correlated with the use of safety behaviours across both groups. The relationship between command hallucinations and the use of safety behaviours was found to be independent of anxiety and beliefs about voice malevolence and omnipotence.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available