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Anxiety induced by cardiac perceptions in patients with panic attack: a field study

Please always quote using this URN: urn:nbn:de:bvb:20-opus-61334
  • In panic disorder bodily sensations appear to play an important role as a trigger for anxiety. In our psychophysiological model of panic attacks we postulate the following vicious circle: individuals with panic attacks perceive even quite small increases in heart rate and interpret these changes as being catastrophic. This elicits anxiety and a further increase in heart rate. To evaluate this model we conducted a field study of 28 subjects with panic attacks and 20 healthy controls. A 24 hr ambulatory ECG was recorded and the subjects wereIn panic disorder bodily sensations appear to play an important role as a trigger for anxiety. In our psychophysiological model of panic attacks we postulate the following vicious circle: individuals with panic attacks perceive even quite small increases in heart rate and interpret these changes as being catastrophic. This elicits anxiety and a further increase in heart rate. To evaluate this model we conducted a field study of 28 subjects with panic attacks and 20 healthy controls. A 24 hr ambulatory ECG was recorded and the subjects were instructed to report any cardiac perceptions during this period and to rate the anxiety elicited by these perceptions. The incidence of cardiac perceptions was about the same in both groups, but only subjects with panic attacks reported anxiety associated with such perceptions. Analysis of the ECGs revealed that in both groups heart rate accelerations preceded cardiac perceptions. Following cardiac perceptions, the healthy controls showed a heart rate deceleration, whereas the subjects with panic attacks had a further acceleration. This heart rate increase after cardiac perceptions was positively related to the level of anxiety elicited by the perceptions. These results provide clear evidence in support of the vicious circle model of panic attacks.show moreshow less

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Metadaten
Author: Paul Pauli, Christian Marquardt, Lydia Hartl, Detlef O. Nutzinger, Rupert Hölzl, Friedrich Strian
URN:urn:nbn:de:bvb:20-opus-61334
Document Type:Journal article
Faculties:Philosophische Fakultät III (bis Sept. 2007) / Institut für Psychologie
Language:English
Year of Completion:1991
Source:Behaviour Research and Therapy (1991) 29, H. 2, S. 137 - 145.
Dewey Decimal Classification:1 Philosophie und Psychologie / 15 Psychologie / 150 Psychologie
GND Keyword:Psychologie
Release Date:2011/12/12
Licence (German):License LogoDeutsches Urheberrecht