Panic attacks and psychopathology among youth
Article first published online: 30 JAN 2004
Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica
Volume 109, Issue 3, pages 216–221, March 2004
How to Cite
Goodwin, R. D. and Gotlib, I. H. (2004), Panic attacks and psychopathology among youth. Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica, 109: 216–221. doi: 10.1046/j.1600-0447.2003.00255.x
- Issue published online: 30 JAN 2004
- Article first published online: 30 JAN 2004
- Accepted for publication October 10, 2003
Objective: To determine the association between panic attacks and mental disorders among youth in the community.
Method: Data were drawn from the Methods for the Epidemiology of Child and Adolescent Mental Disorders study (n = 1285), a community-based sample of youth aged 9–17. Multiple logistic regression analyses were used to determine the association between panic attacks and the range of mental disorders, diagnosed with the Diagnostic Interview Schedule for Children 2.3.
Results: Panic attacks were prevalent among 3.3% of the sample. Panic attacks were associated with an increased likelihood of any anxiety disorders [OR = 4.6 (2.5, 8.5)] and any affective disorder [OR = 5.8 (2.8, 11.7)], as well as social phobia [OR = 2.3 (1.0, 5.4)], specific phobia [OR = 3.4 (1.1, 10.1)], agoraphobia [OR = 2.9 (1.1, 7.6)], generalized anxiety disorder [OR = 4.8 (1.9, 12.1)], separation anxiety disorder [OR = 3.1 (1.3, 7.7)], major depression [OR = 3.6 (1.6, 8.3)], dysthymia [OR = 6.7 (2.9, 15.5)], and hypomania [OR = 26.1 (5.5, 124.1)].
Conclusion: These data are consistent with, and extend, previous clinical findings by showing that panic attacks are associated with increased likelihood of a range of affective and anxiety disorders, but not substance use disorders, among youth in the community. The use of longitudinal study designs in future investigations may be useful in increasing our understanding of the mechanisms underlying these associations.