Juwon Ha and Se-Won Lim contributed equally to this work.
Clinical differences between early- and late-onset social anxiety disorders
Article first published online: 6 FEB 2012
© 2012 Wiley Publishing Asia Pty Ltd
Early Intervention in Psychiatry
Volume 7, Issue 1, pages 44–50, February 2013
How to Cite
Lim, S.-W., Ha, J., Shin, Y.-C., Shin, D.-W., Bae, S.-M. and Oh, K.-S. (2013), Clinical differences between early- and late-onset social anxiety disorders. Early Intervention in Psychiatry, 7: 44–50. doi: 10.1111/j.1751-7893.2012.00341.x
- Issue published online: 28 JAN 2013
- Article first published online: 6 FEB 2012
- Received 30 May 2011; accepted 28 December 2011
- behavioural inhibition;
- early onset;
- social anxiety disorder;
- social phobia
Aim: The aim of this study was to elucidate the clinical differences between early- and late-onset social anxiety disorder (SAD) in the Korean population.
Methods: Three hundred and eighty-seven outpatients diagnosed with SAD participated in this study. Confirmation of SAD diagnosis was based on the Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview. All subjects completed the Liebowitz Social Anxiety Scale and anxiety-trait-related scales such as the Anxiety Sensitivity Index, Retrospective Self-Report of Inhibition, Trait Form of the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory, and Beck Depression Inventory.
Results: The early-onset group (n = 209) consisted of subjects aged up to 18 years at the time of onset, whereas the late-onset group (n = 178) consisted of subjects older than 18 years at the time of onset. Early-onset SAD patients were more likely to have the generalized subtype and to visit clinics with chief complaints other than social anxiety symptoms. They exhibited more severe symptoms and higher behavioural inhibitions. After adjusting for age and symptom severity, behavioural inhibition was the only significant difference between the two groups. The degree of behavioural inhibitions was associated with earlier onset age.
Conclusion: Symptom severity and behavioural inhibitions, especially in social/school situations, were clinical characteristics that differentiated between early- and late-onset SAD.