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Anxiety sensitivity as a predictor of broad dimensions of psychopathology after cognitive behavioral therapy for panic disorder

Authors Ino K, Ogawa S, Kondo M, Imai R, Ii T, Furukawa TA, Akechi T

Received 2 September 2016

Accepted for publication 29 November 2016

Published 13 July 2017 Volume 2017:13 Pages 1835—1840


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Taro Kishi

Keiko Ino,1 Sei Ogawa,1 Masaki Kondo,1 Risa Imai,1 Toshitaka Ii,1 Toshi A Furukawa,2 Tatsuo Akechi1

1Department of Psychiatry and Cognitive-Behavioral Medicine, Nagoya City University Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Nagoya, 2Department of Health Promotion and Human Behavior, Kyoto University Graduate School of Medicine/School of Public Health, Kyoto, Japan

Background: Panic disorder (PD) is a common disease and presents with broad dimensions of psychopathology. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is known to improve these broad dimensions of psychopathology in addition to PD symptoms. However, little is known about the predictors of treatment response in comorbid psychiatric symptoms after CBT for PD. Recent studies suggest that anxiety sensitivity (AS) may be a key vulnerability for PD. This study aimed to examine AS as a predictor of broad dimensions of psychopathology after CBT for PD.
Materials and methods: In total, 118 patients with PD were treated with manualized group CBT. We used multiple regression analysis to examine the associations between 3 Anxiety Sensitivity Index (ASI) factors (physical concerns, mental incapacitation concerns, and social concerns) at baseline and the subscales of the Symptom Checklist-90 Revised (SCL-90-R) at endpoint.
Results: Low levels of social concerns at baseline predicted low levels on 5 SCL-90-R subscales after CBT: interpersonal sensitivity, depression, hostility, paranoid ideation, and psychosis. High levels of mental incapacitation concerns significantly predicted low levels on 3 SCL-90-R subscales after treatment: interpersonal sensitivity, hostility, and paranoid ideation. Physical concerns at baseline did not predict broad dimensions of psychopathology.
Conclusion: This study suggested that the social concerns and mental incapacitation concerns subscales of the ASI at baseline predicted several dimensions of psychopathology after CBT for PD. To improve comorbid psychopathology, it may be useful to direct more attention to these ASI subscales.

Keywords: panic disorder, anxiety sensitivity, comorbid psychopathology, predictor, cognitive behavioral therapy

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