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Consensus Statement on Panic Disorder From the International Consensus Group on Depression and Anxiety

Article Abstract

Objective: To provide primary care clinicians with a better understanding of management issues in panicdisorder and guide clinical practice with recommendations for appropriate pharmacotherapy. Participants:The 4 members of the International Consensus Group on Depression and Anxiety were James C. Ballenger(chair), Jonathan R. T. Davidson, Yves Lecrubier, and David J. Nutt. Four faculty invited by the chairmanalso participated: David S. Baldwin, Johan A. den Boer, Siegfried Kasper, and M. Katherine Shear.Evidence: The consensus statement is based on the 6 review papers that are published in this supplement andon the scientific literature relevant to these issues. Consensus Process: There were group meetings held duringa 2-day period. On day 1, the group discussed each review paper and the chairman and discussant (Dr.Kasper) identified key issues for further debate. On day 2, the group discussed these key issues to arrive at aconsensus view. After the group meetings, the consensus statement was drafted by the chairman and approvedby all attendees. Conclusions: The consensus statement provides standard definitions for responseand remission and identifies appropriate strategy for the management of panic disorder in a primary caresetting. Serotonin selective reuptake inhibitors are recommended as drugs of first choice with a treatmentperiod of 12 to 24 months. Pharmacotherapy should be discontinued slowly over a period of 4 to 6 months.

J Clin Psychiatry 1998;59(suppl 8):47-54)

Volume: 59

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