Overview of Panic and Social Anxiety Disorders
J Clin Psychiatry 2004;65(suppl 14):22-26
© Copyright 2015 Physicians Postgraduate Press, Inc.
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Panic disorder and social anxiety disorder are often-overlooked but debilitating disorders that
share some common symptoms and treatments. Patients with panic disorder experience unexpected
panic attacks and then worry about having more attacks. Those with social anxiety disorder fear doing
or saying something embarrassing in social situations. The prevalence of these conditions is about 3%
for panic disorder and 13% for social anxiety disorder in the United States and is higher in women
than in men. Both disorders are thought to have a familial link and to be related to dysregulation
of neurotransmitter systems. Panic and social anxiety disorders are often comorbid with other psychiatric
disorders. Medication treatment and/or cognitive-behavioral therapy might need to be continued
over the long term to prevent relapse.