DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.18203/2394-6040.ijcmph20202497

The phantom syndrome: a descriptive study on prevalence and association with smartphone addiction and perceived stress among medical students in central Kerala

Shaliet Rose Sebastian, Joyal Alias Saji, Sujaid Abdul Salam, Jibin Joshua Victor, Ashish Thomas Puthuvana

Abstract


Background: Technology in Communication has developed drastically in recent years and the introduction of smartphone is a crucial milestone in history. The constant involvement of people with their smartphone has led to the surfacing of a new kind of psychological disorder called as the phantom syndrome, comprising of phantom vibration syndrome (PVS) and phantom ringing syndrome (PRS), characterized by a recurrent false sensation of vibration and ringing from their smartphones.

Methods: A cross sectional study was conducted among Four hundred eighty seven medical students in Thiruvalla Taluk of Pathanamthitta District, Kerala to estimate prevalence of such sensations among medical students and their association with perceived stress levels and smartphone addiction. Data was collected using a semi structured questionnaire for details about the phantom vibration/phantom ringing sensations over the last 1-month, perceived stress scale (PSS), smartphone addiction scale short version (SAS SV). Chi-square test and odds ratio with 95% confidence interval were used to evaluate statistical significance of association.

Results: 59.1% have a sensation of phantom vibration and 61% experienced phantom ringing syndrome. 73.5% students perceived stress and 67.6% had smartphone addiction. Phantom vibration and phantom ringing were significantly associated to perceived stress and smartphone addiction.

Conclusions: This study throws light on the stress levels and excessive smartphone use among medical students, and the association of smartphone phantom sensations with smartphone addiction and stress level.


Keywords


Kerala, Medical students, Phantom ringing, Phantom vibration, Smartphone addiction, Stress, Thiruvalla

Full Text:

PDF

References


Tanis M, Beukeboom CJ, Hartmann T, Vermeulen IE. Phantom phone signals: An investigation into the prevalence and predictors of imagined cell phone signals. Comput Human Behav. 2015;51:356-62.

Rothberg MB, Arora A, Hermann J, Kleppel R, St Marie P, Visintainer P. Phantom vibration syndrome among medical staff: A cross sectional survey. BMJ 2010;341:c6914.

Deb A. Phantom vibration and phantom ringing among mobile phone users: A systematic review of literature. Asia Pac Psychiatr. 2015;7:231-9.

Drouin M, Kaiser DH, Miller DA. Phantom vibrations among undergraduates: Prevalence and associated psychological characteristics. Comput Hum Behav. 2012;28:1490-6.

Lin YH, Chen CY, Li P, Lin SH. A dimensional approach to the phantom vibration and ringing syndrome during medical internship. J Psychiatr Res. 2013;47:1254-8.

Goyal AK. Studies on phantom vibration and ringing syndrome among postgraduate students. Indian J Community Health. 2015;27:35-40.

Mohammadbeigi A, Mohammadsalehi N, Moshiri E, Anbari Z, Ahmadi A, Ansari H, et al. The prevalence of phantom vibration/ringing syndromes and their related factors in Iranian’ students of medical sciences. Asian J Psychiatr. 2017;27:76‑80.

Lin Y, Lin S, Li P, Huang W, Chen C. Prevalent hallucinations during medical internships: Phantom vibration and ringing syndromes. PloS ONE. 2013;8(6):e65152.

Kruger DJ, Djerf JM. High ringxiety: attachment anxiety predicts experiences of phantom cell phone ringing. Cyberpsychol Behav Soc Net. 2016;19:56-9.

Mangot AG, Murthy VS, Kshirsagar SV, Deshmukh AH, Tembe DV. Prevalence and pattern of phantom ringing and phantom vibration among medical interns and their relationship with smartphone use and perceived stress. Indian J Psychol Med. 2018;40:440-5.

Cohen S, Kamarck T, Mermelstein R. A global measure of perceived stress. J Health Soc Behav. 1983;24:385-96.

Kwon M, Kim DJ, Cho H, Yang S. The smartphone addiction scale: development and validation of a short version for adolescents. PLoS One. 2013;8:e83558.

Alam M, Qureshi S, Sarwat A, Haque Z, Masroor S, Makki A, et al. Prevalence of phantom vibration syndrome and phantom ringing syndrome (ringxiety): risk of sleep disorders and infertility among medical students. Int J Adv. 2014;2.

Pavithra MB, Madhukumar S, Murthy M. A Study on nomophobia‑mobile phone dependence, among students of a medical college in Bangalore. Nat J Community Med. 2015;6:340‑4.

Iqbal S, Gupta S, Venkatarao E. Stress, anxiety and depression among medical undergraduate students and their socio‑demographic correlates. Indian J Med Res. 2015;141:354‑7.