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Psychiatry AND Phobic disorder [keywords]
- Non-fat-phobic eating disorders: Why we need to investigate implicit associations and neural correlates. [Journal Article]
- Int J Eat Disord 2013 Jul; 46(5):416-9.
- Decreased gray matter volume of the medial orbitofrontal cortex in panic disorder with agoraphobia: A preliminary study. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Prog Neuropsychopharmacol Biol Psychiatry 2013 Apr 28.
BACKGROUND:Patients with panic disorder with agoraphobia (PDA) have clinical symptoms such as the fear of being outside or of open spaces from which escape would be difficult. Although recent neurobiological studies have suggested that fear conditioning and extinction are associated with PDA, no study has examined the possible structural abnormalities in patients with PDA.
METHODS:This preliminary study compares the gray matter volume among patients with PDA, those with panic disorder without agoraphobia (PDW), and healthy controls (HC) using high-resolution 3.0T magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) with voxel-based morphometry (VBM).
RESULTS:Compared with HC, patients with PDA showed decreased gray matter volume in their left medial orbitofrontal gyrus. However, differences were not found in the gray matter volumes of patients with PDW and whole panic disorder compared with HC.
CONCLUSIONS:These findings suggest that the phobic avoidance found in patients with PDA arise from abnormalities in the medial orbitofrontal cortex, which plays an important role in fear extinction. Future studies should investigate the neuroanatomical substrates of PDA and distinguish them from those of PDW.
- Psychopathology in adolescent offspring of parents with panic disorder, major depression, or both: a 10-year follow-up. [Comparative Study, Journal Article, Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural]
- Am J Psychiatry 2012 Nov 1; 169(11):1175-84.
The authors examined the specificity and course of psychiatric disorders from early childhood through adolescence in offspring of parents with confirmed panic disorder and major depressive disorder.The authors examined rates of psychiatric disorders at 10-year-follow-up (mean age, 14 years) in four groups: offspring of referred parents with panic and depression (N=137), offspring of referred parents with panic without depression (N=26), offspring of referred parents with depression without panic (N=48), and offspring of nonreferred parents with neither disorder (N=80). Follow-up assessments relied on structured interviews with the adolescents and their mothers; diagnoses were rated present if endorsed by either.Parental panic disorder, independently of parental depression, predicted lifetime rates in offspring of multiple anxiety disorders, panic disorder, agoraphobia, social phobia, and obsessive-compulsive disorder. Parental depression independently predicted offspring bipolar, drug use, and disruptive behavior disorders. Parental panic and depression interacted to predict specific phobia and major depressive disorder. Phobias were elevated in all at-risk groups, and depression was elevated in both offspring groups of parents with depression (with or without panic disorder), with the highest rates in the offspring of parents with depression only. Parental depression independently predicted new onset of depression, parental panic disorder independently predicted new onset of social phobia, and the two interacted to predict new onset of specific phobia and generalized anxiety disorder.At-risk offspring continue to develop new disorders as they progress through adolescence. These results support the need to screen and monitor the offspring of adults presenting for treatment of panic disorder or major depressive disorder.
- Clinical and sociodemographic characteristics associated with suicidal ideation in depressed outpatients. [Journal Article, Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural]
- Can J Psychiatry 2013 Feb; 58(2):113-22.
To identify clinical and sociodemographic characteristics associated with suicidal ideation (SI) among patients seeking care for depression in routine primary and psychiatric care settings.We examined data from 4041 treatment-seeking outpatients with major depressive disorder (MDD) to compare baseline sociodemographic and clinical characteristics of those with and without SI, and the presence or absence of baseline depressive symptoms and psychiatric comorbidities in those with SI.SI was significantly (P < 0.01) associated with numerous sociodemographic characteristics (that is, lower level of education, Caucasian or African American, male, unemployed, and treated in psychiatric care) and clinical features (that is, previous suicide attempt, younger age of MDD onset, greater baseline depressive symptom severity, greater number of depressive symptoms, and presence of agoraphobia and [or] generalized anxiety disorder). Elevated levels of SI at baseline were associated with decreased remission rates.Consistent with past findings, increased rates of SI were associated with greater depressive symptom severity as well as other features suggestive of severity of illness. Our results confirm previous findings of associations between SI and panic and (or) phobic symptoms and anxiety, but did not confirm previous findings of an association between SI and alcohol or drug use and (or) dependence. While selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor monotherapy appeared significantly helpful in reducing SI during the course of treatment, the presence of SI at baseline was found to be a associated with decreased treatment response, with patients reporting SI at the start of treatment being less likely to achieve remission. Clinical Trial Registration Number: Sequenced Treatment Alternatives to Relieve Depression, NCT00021528.
- Spider phobia is associated with decreased left amygdala volume: a cross-sectional study. [Journal Article, Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't]
- BMC Psychiatry 2013.:70.
Evidence from animal and human studies imply the amygdala as the most critical structure involved in processing of fear-relevant stimuli. In phobias, the amygdala seems to play a crucial role in the pathogenesis and maintenance of the disorder. However, the neuropathology of specific phobias remains poorly understood. In the present study, we investigated whether patients with spider phobia show altered amygdala volumes as compared to healthy control subjects.Twenty female patients with spider phobia and twenty age-matched healthy female controls underwent magnetic resonance imaging to investigate amygdala volumes. The amygdalae were segmented using an automatic, model-based segmentation tool (FSL FIRST). Differences in amygdala volume were investigated by multivariate analysis of covariance with group as between-subject factor and left and right amygdala as dependent factors. The relation between amygdala volume and clinical features such as symptom severity, disgust sensitivity, trait anxiety and duration of illness was investigated by Spearman correlation analysis.Spider phobic patients showed significantly smaller left amygdala volume than healthy controls. No significant difference in right amygdala volume was detected. Furthermore, the diminished amygdala size in patients was related to higher symptom severity, but not to higher disgust sensitivity or trait anxiety and was independent of age.In summary, the results reveal a relation between higher symptom severity and smaller left amygdala volume in patients with spider phobia. This relation was independent of other potential confounders such as the disgust sensitivity or trait anxiety. The findings suggest that greater spider phobic fear is associated with smaller left amygdala. However, the smaller left amygdala volume may either stand for a higher vulnerability to develop a phobic disorder or emerge as a consequence of the disorder.
- [The way to proceed in psychotherapy--focusing on the framework of phobias and obsessive-compulsive stories]. [English Abstract, Journal Article, Review]
- Seishin Shinkeigaku Zasshi 2012; 114(11):1323-9.
Compulsion becomes long-term when treatment is commenced with very severe resistance. Patients showing emotional changes are rare compared to those with conversion and phobic disorders. However, most people improve when careful treatment is carried out. Although there are those in whom drug treatment is effective, drug treatment and psychotherapy are concomitantly used in most cases. In this lecture, the characteristics of compulsion were psychodynamically investigated regarding: 1. Central conflict, 2. Defense mechanisms, 3. Condition of love life (including sex life), 4. Growth history, by comparing with phobias. When the life of the inner-self protrudes, obsessive-compulsive patients try to contradict and deny this. The symptoms sometimes directly represent the mental conflict of the person, and sometimes the symptom formation process may be understood to some extent. It is said that such cases are suitable for psychotherapy. Psychodynamic psychotherapy involves regaining the continuity of emotional life divided due to defenses such as negation, reaction formation, and isolation. Meanwhile, the real nature of phobias is avoidance and escape. Therefore, the trick in proceeding with interviews is to lead the phobia patient to areas which they avoid during interviews and areas which they avoid in daily life, and to have the patient enter these fields at times by encouraging them.
- Implications of memory modulation for post-traumatic stress and fear disorders. [Journal Article, Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural, Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't, Review]
- Nat Neurosci 2013 Feb; 16(2):146-53.
Post-traumatic stress disorder, panic disorder and phobia manifest in ways that are consistent with an uncontrollable state of fear. Their development involves heredity, previous sensitizing experiences, association of aversive events with previous neutral stimuli, and inability to inhibit or extinguish fear after it is chronic and disabling. We highlight recent progress in fear learning and memory, differential susceptibility to disorders of fear, and how these findings are being applied to the understanding, treatment and possible prevention of fear disorders. Promising advances are being translated from basic science to the clinic, including approaches to distinguish risk versus resilience before trauma exposure, methods to interfere with fear development during memory consolidation after a trauma, and techniques to inhibit fear reconsolidation and to enhance extinction of chronic fear. It is hoped that this new knowledge will translate to more successful, neuroscientifically informed and rationally designed approaches to disorders of fear regulation.
- Space and motion perception and discomfort in air travel. [Journal Article, Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't]
- Aviat Space Environ Med 2012 Dec; 83(12):1162-6.
The perception of comfort during air trips is determined by several factors. External factors like cabin design and environmental parameters (temperature, humidity, air pressure, noise, and vibration) interact with individual characteristics (anxiety traits, fear of flying, and personality) from arrival at the airport to landing at the destination. In this study, we investigated the influence of space and motion discomfort (SMD), fear of heights, and anxiety on comfort perception during all phases of air travel.We evaluated 51 frequent air travelers through a modified version of the Flight Anxiety Situations Questionnaire (FAS), in which new items were added and where the subjects were asked to report their level of discomfort or anxiety (not fear) for each phase of air travel (Chronbach's alpha = 0.974). Correlations were investigated among these scales: State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI), Cohen's Acrophobia Questionnaire, and the Situational Characteristics Questionnaire (SitQ, designed to estimate SMD levels).Scores of SitQ correlated with discomfort in situations involving space and movement perception (Pearson's rho = 0.311), while discomfort was associated with cognitive mechanisms related to scores in the anxiety scales (Pearson's rho = 0.375). Anxiety traits were important determinants of comfort perception before and after flight, while the influence of SMD was more significant during the time spent in the aircraft cabin.SMD seems to be an important modulator of comfort perception in air travel. Its influence on physical well being and probably on cognitive performance, with possible effects on flight safety, deserves further investigation.
- Effects of co-occurring depression on treatment for anxiety disorders: analysis of outcomes from a large primary care effectiveness trial. [Journal Article, Multicenter Study, Randomized Controlled Trial, Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural]
- J Clin Psychiatry 2012 Dec; 73(12):1509-16.
Co-occurring depression is common in patients seeking treatment for anxiety; however, the literature on the effects of depression on anxiety treatment outcomes is inconclusive. The current study evaluated prescriptive and prognostic effects of depression on anxiety treatment outcomes in a large primary care sample.Data were analyzed from a randomized controlled effectiveness trial that compared coordinated anxiety learning and management (CALM) to usual care. The study enrolled 1,004 patients between June 2006 and April 2008. Patients were referred by their primary care provider and met DSM-IV criteria for generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder, and/or social anxiety disorder. They were treated for approximately 3 to 12 months with CALM (computer-assisted cognitive-behavioral therapy, medication management, or their combination) or usual care. Outcomes were evaluated by blinded assessment at 6, 12, and 18 months. Effects of baseline major depressive disorder (MDD) on anxiety symptoms, anxiety-related disability, and response/remission rates were evaluated using statistical models accounting for baseline anxiety and patient demographics.MDD did not moderate the effects of CALM (relative to usual care) on anxiety symptoms, anxiety-related disability, or response/remission rates. Greater improvements in anxiety symptoms and anxiety-related disability were observed in depressed patients, regardless of treatment assignment (P values < .005). However, cross-sectionally depressed patients displayed higher anxiety symptom and anxiety-related disability scores at baseline and all subsequent assessments (P values < .001). Depressed patients also displayed lower remission rates at each follow-up (P values < .001).CALM had comparable advantages over usual care for patients with and without MDD. Depressed patients displayed more severe anxiety symptoms and anxiety-related disability at baseline, but their clinical improvement was substantial and larger in magnitude than that observed in the nondepressed patients. Results support the use of empirically supported interventions for anxiety disorders in patients with co-occurring depression.ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT00347269.
- Pediatric social anxiety disorder: predictors of response to pharmacological treatment. [Journal Article]
- J Child Adolesc Psychopharmacol 2012 Dec; 22(6):410-4.
Pediatric social anxiety disorder (SAD) is associated with an increased risk of comorbid mental disorders, with implications for prognosis and treatment strategy. The aim of this study is to explore predictors of treatment response, and the role of comorbidity in affecting refractoriness.One hundred and forty consecutive youths (81 males, 57.9%), ages 7-18 years (mean age 13.7 ± 2.5 years, mean age at onset of SAD 10.6 ± 2.7 years) met American Psychiatric Association, Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th ed. (DSM-IV) criteria for SAD as primary diagnosis, according to a structured clinical interview (Kiddie Schedule for Affective Disorders and Schizophrenia for School-Aged Children-Present and Lifetime Version [K-SADS-PL]). All received a pharmacological treatment with serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) targeted to SAD, associated with additional medications for comorbidities (mood stabilizers in 27.1%, antipsychotics in 12.8%) and 57.9% received an additional psychotherapy.Eighty-nine patients (63.6%) responded to treatments after 3 months, namely 72.8% with psychotherapy plus medication and 50.8% with medication only. Nonresponders had more severe symptoms at baseline in terms of both clinical severity and functional impairment, and had more comorbid disruptive behavior disorders. The backward logistic regression indicated that clinical severity and functional impairment at baseline, comorbid disruptive behavior disorders, and bipolar disorders were predictors of nonresponse.Our data suggest that SSRIs can be effective in pediatric SAD, but that the more severe forms of the disorder and those with heavier comorbidity are associated with poorer prognosis.