The use of electrophotographic techniques in differentiating state depression and state anxiety


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Patricia Rupert is at the Loyola University of Chicago.


The ability of electrophotographic techniques to differentiate levels of state anxiety and state depression were investigated. Forty male and female undergraduate students, who were screened with the DACL, STAI, and Mini-Mult and who met certain dietary and medicinal restrictions, had the index finger of their left hand electrophotographed. In addition, the skin resistance level of these subjects was assessed. The discharge patterns produced by these electrophotographs were rated by two volunteer judges using a seven-point scoring system. The differences in discharge pattern ratings and skin resistance levels between high and low anxious subjects were significant, with high anxious subjects having lower-rated discharge patterns and higher skin resistance levels. No significant differences were obtained with either measure for the depression variable or the interaction effect. Interestingly, there was no significant relationship between skin resistance and discharge ratings. Regression analyses indicated that each measure accounted for unique sources of variance, with skin resistance being the best predictor of anxiety.