Auditory feature perception and auditory hallucinatory experiences in schizophrenia spectrum disorder

Ashley M. Schnakenberg Martin, Lisa Bartolomeo, Josselyn Howell, William P. Hetrick, Amanda R. Bolbecker, Alan Breier, Gary Kidd, Brian F. O’Donnell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations


Schizophrenia spectrum disorder (SZ) is associated with deficits in auditory perception as well as auditory verbal hallucinations (AVH). However, the relationship between auditory feature perception and auditory verbal hallucinations (AVH), one of the most commonly occurring symptoms in psychosis, has not been well characterized. This study evaluated perception of a broad range of auditory features in SZ and determined whether current AVHs relate to auditory feature perception. Auditory perception, including frequency, intensity, duration, pulse-train and temporal order discrimination, as well as an embedded tone task, was assessed in both AVH (n = 20) and non-AVH (n = 24) SZ individuals and in healthy controls (n = 29) with the Test of Basic Auditory Capabilities (TBAC). The Hamilton Program for Schizophrenia Voices Questionnaire (HPSVQ) was used to assess the experience of auditory hallucinations in patients with SZ. Findings suggest that compared to controls, the SZ group had greater deficits on an array of auditory features, with non-AVH SZ individuals showing the most severe degree of abnormality. IQ and measures of cognitive processing were positively associated with performance on the TBAC for all SZ individuals, but not with the HPSVQ scores. These findings indicate that persons with SZ demonstrate impaired auditory perception for a broad range of features. It does not appear that impaired auditory perception is associated with recent auditory verbal hallucinations, but instead associated with the degree of intellectual impairment in SZ.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)653-661
Number of pages9
JournalEuropean Archives of Psychiatry and Clinical Neuroscience
Issue number7
StatePublished - Oct 1 2018


  • Auditory perception
  • Auditory verbal hallucinations
  • TBAC

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry
  • Pharmacology (medical)

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