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Keywords:

  • trauma;
  • posttraumatic stress disorder;
  • panic attacks

Abstract

This study assessed the frequency and severity of panic attack symptoms and panic attacks that develop in relation to the experience of traumatic events in 62 subjects seeking treatment for trauma-related symptomatology. Results indicated a high incidence of panic attacks (69%). Many individuals also thought they were going crazy or losing control (72%) or having a heart attack (38%) within the 2 weeks prior to assessment. These findings indicate that similar to panic disordered patients, many trauma victims with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) not only experience physiological symptoms of panic, but are also fearful of these symptoms.