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J Nerv Ment Dis. 1979 Jul;167(7):402-9.

Some nonverbal aspects of depression and schizophrenia occurring during the interview.


Using remote control videotape recording of interviews and subsequent analysis of the record, eight measures of nonverbal behavior (principally facial) have been made in 12 schizophrenic and 13 depressive subjects shortly after admission to the hospital and again prior to discharge. They were matched with controls who were interviewed in a similar way. Additional videotape observations were made prior to the interview, when the patient was alone and subsequently when he was shown pictures designed to evoke emotional responses. It appears that some nonverbal behaviors can be used in the interview to differentiate between psychiatric patients and normals. These may also be useful as an index of clinical change since they revert toward the normal with clinical improvement. The nonverbal behaviors studied were more prominent in the interpersonal setting than when alone or when the subject was looking at pictorial stimuli. This implies that they may be elicited in response to another individual, either as a distortion of the ordinary nonverbal signaling system, or as physiological responses to a changed state of arousal induced by the interpersonal setting rather than as static characteristics of the syndrome.

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