New Summaries of Anxiety Disorders

Attention Bias, Threat/Anxiety Symptoms Linked

A recent study indicates associations between threat bias and pediatric anxiety symptoms, and suggests that vigilance to external threats manifests more prominently in symptoms of social anxiety and school phobia, regardless of age and gender. These findings point to the role of attention bias to threat in anxiety, with implications for translational clinical research. A total of 1,291 children and adolescents from 7 research sites worldwide completed standardized attention bias assessment task (dot-probe task) and child anxiety symptoms measure (Screen for Child Anxiety Related Emotional Disorders). Using a dimensional approach to symptomatology, researchers conducted regression analyses predicting overall, and disorder-specific, anxiety symptoms severity, based on threat bias scores.

A recent study indicates associations between threat bias and pediatric anxiety symptoms, and suggests that vigilance to external threats manifests more prominently in symptoms of social anxiety and school phobia, regardless of age and gender. These findings point to the role of attention bias to threat in anxiety, with implications for translational clinical research. A total of 1,291 children and adolescents from 7 research sites worldwide completed standardized attention bias assessment task (dot-probe task) and child anxiety symptoms measure (Screen for Child Anxiety Related Emotional Disorders). Using a dimensional approach to symptomatology, researchers conducted regression analyses predicting overall, and disorder-specific, anxiety symptoms severity, based on threat bias scores.

SOURCE: Depress Anxiety; ePub

Online Collaborative Care for Anxiety Examined

Among patients with mood and anxiety disorders randomized to computerized cognitive behavioral therapy + an internet support group (CCBT+ISG), CCBT alone, or their primary care physicians’ usual care, a recent study found that patients in the CCBT+ISG and CCBT alone cohorts reported similar improvements in mental health-related quality of life, mood, and anxiety symptoms, while patients in the CCBT alone cohort reported greater improvements than usual care. Primary care physicians from 26 practices in Pittsburgh, PA, referred 2,884 patients aged 18 to 75 years in response to an electronic medical record prompt. Overall, 704 patients (24.4%) met all eligibility criteria and were randomized to CCBT alone (n=301), CCBT+ISG (n=302), or usual care (n=101). 604 patients (85.8%) completed a primary 6-month outcome assessment. Researchers found:

  • At 6-month assessment, 254/301 patients (84.4%) receiving CCBT alone started the program, and 228/302 patients (75.5%) in the CCBT+ISG cohort logged into the ISG at least once, of whom 141 (61.8%) provided ≥1 comments or posts.
  • Patients receiving CCBT+ISG reported similar 6-month improvements in mental health–related quality of life, mood, and anxiety symptoms compared with patients receiving CCBT alone.SOURCE: JAMA Psychiatry

Adverse Life Events and Anxiety Disorder Onset

The pattern of association between adverse events and anxiety disorder onset was similar across sub-types, and injury, illness, or death of family members or close friends consistently had the strongest association with anxiety disorder onset, a recent study found. These findings suggest that adverse life events play a role in the onset of anxiety disorders. Data from Waves 1 (n=43,093; 2001–2002) and 2 (n=34,653; 2004–2005) of the National Epidemiological Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions (NESARC) were used to assess whether adverse events at baseline are associated with increased risk of anxiety disorder onset over 3 years of follow up. Researchers found:

  • 66% of respondents with an anxiety disorder in the intervening period between Waves 1 and 2 had experienced an adverse life event in the year prior to the Wave 1 interview.
  • In logistic regression models adjusted for sociodemographic and psychiatric characteristics, adverse life events at baseline were associated with anxiety disorder onset within the 3-year follow up period.SOURCE: Psychiatry Res; ePub

Sensitivity and Sleep Disturbance Assessed

Anxiety sensitivity (AS) is elevated in patients with anxiety disorders and substance use disorders (SUD) and has been linked to sleep-related problems, including insomnia and somnolence (ie, daytime sleepiness). In a recent study, researchers examined the unique roles of AS cognitive, physical, and social concerns in sleep disturbance among a sample of 99 residential SUD patients with anxiety disorders. Clinical levels of insomnia or somnolence were evidenced by 53.5% of the sample. Consistent with predictions, AS physical concerns were significantly associated with insomnia, and AS cognitive concerns were significantly related to insomnia and somnolence. Hierarchical linear regression models were conducted to test the association of AS cognitive and physical concerns with insomnia and somnolence symptoms while controlling for relevant factors. They found:

  • AS cognitive concerns accounted for unique variance, above and beyond withdrawal symptoms, anxiety, and depressive symptoms, in the model examining insomnia symptoms.
  • AS cognitive concerns may represent an important transdiagnostic mechanism underlying sleep disturbance among individuals with dual diagnosis.

SOURCE: J Anxiety Disord; ePub

 

FROM: Clinical Edge

By |2017-12-28T06:59:57+00:00December 28th, 2017|Brief Bulletins from the Field, We Know Psychiatry|0 Comments

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