ISSN 2043-8087
Journal of Experimental Psychopathology
 Volume 7, Issue 4, 564-576, 2016
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Socially-relevant Panic Symptoms in Social Anxiety Disorder

  Mark Versella - Psychology Department, Temple University, Philadelphia, USA
  Carrie Potter - Psychology Department, Temple University, Philadelphia, USA
  Richard Heimberg - Psychology Department, Temple University, Philadelphia, USA

Volume 7, Issue 4, 2016, Pages 564-576


Panic attacks (PAs) are experienced by approximately half of all individuals with social anxiety disorder (SAD) and are often situationally triggered. Clinical observation suggests that individuals with SAD experience additional “non-traditional” socially-relevant symptoms during PAs. This study examined whether treatment-seeking individuals with SAD endorsed socially-relevant symptoms during PAs and whether these symptoms might be useful in characterizing PAs among these patients. Based on endorsement rates and factor-analytic results, we developed criteria for a socially-relevant PA and divided the sample into four groups: no PAs, socially-relevant PAs only, traditional PAs only, and combined socially-relevant/traditional PAs. Compared to the no-PA group, the combined and socially-relevant PA groups exhibited greater symptom severity (ps < .048), whereas the traditional PA group did not (ps > .107). Findings suggest that previous associations between PAs and greater symptom severity in SAD may be at least partially explained by the presence of socially-relevant panic symptoms.

Table of Contents
  Anxiety Disorders Interview Schedule for DSM-IV: Lifetime Version (ADIS-IV-L)
  Social Interaction Anxiety Scale (SIAS)
  Social Phobia Scale (SPS)
  Liebowitz Social Anxiety Scale (LSAS)
  Affective Control Scale (ACS)
 Data Analytic Plan
 Descriptive Analyses
 Exploratory Factor Analyses
  Traditional Panic Symptoms
  Socially-relevant Panic Symptoms
  All Panic Symptoms
 Comparisons of the Four PA Groups

Correspondence to
Richard G. Heimberg, Department of Psychology, Temple University, Weiss Hall, 1701 N. 13th St., Philadelphia PA 19122.

social anxiety; social anxiety disorder; panic; panic attacks

Received 17 Feb 2016; Revised 19 Apr 2016; Accepted 19 Apr 2016; In Press 16 May 2016

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