Overview of Generalized Anxiety Disorder: Epidemiology, Presentation, and Course
J Clin Psychiatry 2009;70(suppl 2):4-9
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Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) was defined relatively recently, and the diagnostic criteria are
still being refined. The essential feature of the disorder has changed from persistent anxiety to excessive
worry, and the required symptom duration has changed from 1 month to 6 months. Additionally,
exclusion criteria involving permissibility of the diagnosis in children and wording regarding the relationship
of GAD with mood disorders have changed. Nosologic controversies still surround the criteria
for excessive worry, symptom duration, the relationship between GAD and major depressive disorder,
and the required number of associated symptoms.