The Relationship of Symptomatology and Medication to Electrodermal Activity in Schizophrenia

Michael Foster Green, Keith H. Nuechterlein, Paul Satz

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43 Scopus citations


An electrodermal assessment procedure using mild innocuous tones, task‐relevant tones, and loud white noise was administered to a sample of schizophernic patients (n=77). The present study investigated the relationship of schizophrenic symptomatology and anticholinergic level of neuroleptic medication to electrodermal variables. Each patient was evaluated for positive (florid) and negative (defect) symptoms. The neuroleptics that patients received were rated according to their anticholinergic effect. No significant differences in symptomatology were observed between electrodermal responders and nonresponders; however, nonresponders showed a nonsignificant tendency to have more positive and negative symptoms than responders. Both negative symptoms and anticholinergic levels were significant predictors of lower tonic levels of skin conductance. Patients receiving high anticholinergic neuroleptics showed significantly reduced measures of electrodermal responsivity and tonic levels. Thus, both symptomatology and type of neuroleptic are related to electrodermal measures, with the anticholinergic effect of neuroleptic medication being more pronounced.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)148-157
Number of pages10
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1989
Externally publishedYes


  • Electrodermal responsivity
  • Negative symptoms
  • Neuroleptics
  • Schizophrenia


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