18. Epidemiology of Anxiety Disorders

  1. Ming T. Tsuang4,5,
  2. Mauricio Tohen6,7 and
  3. Peter B. Jones8
  1. Ewald Horwath1,
  2. Felicia Gould2 and
  3. Myrna M. Weissman3

Published Online: 19 APR 2011

DOI: 10.1002/9780470976739.ch18

Textbook of Psychiatric Epidemiology, Third Edition

Textbook of Psychiatric Epidemiology, Third Edition

How to Cite

Horwath, E., Gould, F. and Weissman, M. M. (2011) Epidemiology of Anxiety Disorders, in Textbook of Psychiatric Epidemiology, Third Edition (eds M. T. Tsuang, M. Tohen and P. B. Jones), John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Chichester, UK. doi: 10.1002/9780470976739.ch18

Editor Information

  1. 4

    Center for Behavioral Genomics, Department of Psychiatry, University of California, San Diego, 9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla CA 92039, USA

  2. 5

    Harvard Institute of Psychiatric Epidemiology & Genetics, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, USA

  3. 6

    Department of Psychiatry, University of Texas Health Science Centre at San Antonio, USA

  4. 7

    Division of Mood and Anxiety Disorders, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, 7526 Louis Pasteur Drive, San Antonio TX 78229-3900, USA

  5. 8

    Department of Psychiatry, University of Cambridge, Box 189, Addenbrooke's Hospital, Cambridge CB2 2QQ, UK

Author Information

  1. 1

    Department of Psychiatry, Epidemiology and Public Health, Miller School of Medicine, University of Miami, MHHC, Suite 3100, 1695 NW 9th Ave, Miami FL 33136, USA

  2. 2

    Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, Miller School of Medicine, University of Miami, 3225 Aviation Ave., Suite 303, Miami FL 33133, USA

  3. 3

    Department of Psychiatry, Columbia University,College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York State Psychiatric Institute, 1051 Riverside Drive, New York NY 10032, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 19 APR 2011
  2. Published Print: 15 APR 2011

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780470694671

Online ISBN: 9780470976739



  • epidemiology of anxiety disorders;
  • Epidemiological Catchment Area (ECA) study - first epidemiological survey employing lay Interviewers, standardised assessment tool, the Diagnostic Interview Schedule (DIS);
  • anxiety disorders, and anxiety - recognised as a symptom ever since writings of Freud;
  • epidemiological community surveys of psychiatric disorders - using DSM-III, DSM-III-R or DSM-IV diagnostic criteria;
  • race/ethnicity, in ECA study - no significant differences in prevalence rates, between African-American, Hispanic and white groups;
  • risk factors, and lifetime rates of agoraphobia - higher for women than for men;
  • DSM-III agoraphobia, fear and avoidance - being in places or situations from which escape might be difficult;
  • central feature of DSM-IV social phobia - a persistent, irrational fear accompanied by a compelling desire to avoid situations under the scrutiny of others;
  • Generalised anxiety disorder - DSM-IV-TR criteria for GAD, excessive anxiety and worry difficult to control;
  • mass disasters, natural disasters and terrorist attacks - cultural differences and inconsistent methodology, variability in types of mental health problems


This chapter contains sections titled:

  • Introduction

  • Anxiety disorders

  • Panic disorder

  • Agoraphobia

  • Social phobia

  • Generalised anxiety disorder

  • Obsessive–compulsive disorder

  • Anxiety and affective disorders and mass disasters

  • Future developments

  • Acknowledgements

  • References

  • Further reading