Anxiety and depressive disorders in offspring at high risk for anxiety: A meta-analysis

Clinical and Research Program in Pediatric Psychopharmacology, Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School, Suite 2000, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA.
Journal of anxiety disorders (Impact Factor: 2.68). 09/2009; 23(8):1158-64. DOI: 10.1016/j.janxdis.2009.07.021
Source: PubMed


This paper presents a meta-analysis of studies examining prevalence of psychopathology among offspring of anxiety-disordered parents, with the purpose of determining overall risk among these offspring for developing anxiety and depressive disorders. Pooled odds ratios for these disorders among high-risk offspring, compared to offspring of psychiatric and non-psychiatric controls, were calculated. Sixteen papers (including three follow-up studies) were identified, encompassing 1892 offspring (ages 4-25 years). Results revealed that: (1) offspring of parents with anxiety disorders have greater risk for anxiety and depressive disorders than offspring of non-psychiatric controls (ORs=3.91 and 2.67, respectively) and greater risk for anxiety disorders than offspring of psychiatric controls (OR=1.84); (2) offspring of anxious parents have significantly greater odds of having each type of anxiety disorder and MDD compared to offspring of non-psychiatric controls (ORs range from 1.96 to 8.69); and (3) offspring of parents with anxiety only, anxiety plus MDD, and MDD only have similar odds of having anxiety and depressive disorders but significantly higher odds than offspring of parents without disorder. Results suggest that parental anxiety disorders confer significant risk for anxiety and depression in offspring. Additional studies are needed to examine whether there are differences among specific parental anxiety disorders.

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    • "Furthermore, these children are two to seven times more likely to develop an anxiety disorder compared to children of parents without an anxiety disorder [13-17]. Moreover, children of parents with an anxiety disorder, a depression, or both, have significantly higher odds of developing depression or anxiety compared to children of parents without these disorders [16]. The first explanation is that these children experience more stress at home and that their parents have less parenting skills. "
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    ABSTRACT: Depression and anxiety disorders during adolescence can have detrimental consequences. Both disorders are related to negative outcome in various areas during adolescence and are also predictive of depression and anxiety disorders later in life. Especially parental psychopathology and being female are risk factors that increase the probability of developing one of these disorders during adolescence. Research has shown that prevention programs have promising results, especially for adolescents who have these risk factors. Therefore, in this study, we will focus on the effectiveness of a prevention program 'A jump forward' that has been developed for adolescent girls with a familial risk of depression and/or anxiety. We designed a randomized controlled trial to test the effectiveness of an indicated and selective prevention program aimed at depression and anxiety in adolescent girls. Adolescents aged between 11 and 15 years old with depressive and/or anxiety symptoms and with parents who show indicators of parental psychopathology will be randomly assigned to the experimental (N = 80) or control groups (N = 80). Participants in the experimental group will follow a preventive intervention, consisting of six sessions of 90 minutes each. All participants will complete baseline, intervention phase 1 (after session 2), intervention phase 2 (after session 4), post-intervention, 6 month follow-up, and 12 month follow-up assessments. Furthermore, parents will be asked to complete assessments at baseline, post-intervention, and 12-month follow-up. Primary outcome will be depressive symptoms. Secondary outcomes will be anxiety symptoms, suicidal ideation, response style, negative cognitive errors, parental emotional support and parental control, parental psychopathology, parenting stress and adolescents' depression and anxiety symptoms according to the parents. This paper described the study designed to evaluate a program for preventing depression and/or anxiety in high-risk adolescents over a 12-month follow-up period. If the program showed to be effective in reducing symptoms of depression and anxiety and preventing adolescents from developing clinical levels of these disorders, our results would be relevant to practice. Thus, the intervention could be used on a large scale. Moreover, this study aims to contribute to the evidence-based prevention of depression and anxiety of adolescents.Trial registration: Dutch Trial Register NTR3720.
    BMC Psychiatry 11/2013; 13(1):316. DOI:10.1186/1471-244X-13-316 · 2.21 Impact Factor
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    • "Moreover, we failed to measure other potentially important predictors of adolescent SA, including parental psychopathology . A recent meta-analysis suggests much greater risk of anxiety and depressive disorders among offspring of anxious parents (Micco et al. 2009). It may be that anxious parents more often engage in overly controlling behaviors, and thus, maternal over-control may mediate the association between parent and child anxiety. "
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    ABSTRACT: Behavioral inhibition (BI) and maternal over-control are early risk factors for later childhood internalizing problems, particularly social anxiety disorder (SAD). Consistently high BI across childhood appears to confer risk for the onset of SAD by adolescence. However, no prior studies have prospectively examined observed maternal over-control as a risk factor for adolescent social anxiety (SA) among children initially selected for BI. The present prospective longitudinal study examines the direct and indirect relations between these early risk factors and adolescent SA symptoms and SAD, using a multi-method approach. The sample consisted of 176 participants initially recruited as infants and assessed for temperamental reactivity to novel stimuli at age 4 months. BI was measured via observations and parent-report across multiple assessments between the ages of 14 months and 7 years. Maternal over-control was assessed observationally during parent-child interaction tasks at 7 years. Adolescents (ages 14-17 years) and parents provided independent reports of adolescent SA symptoms. Results indicated that higher maternal over-control at 7 years predicted higher SA symptoms and lifetime rates of SAD during adolescence. Additionally, there was a significant interaction between consistently high BI and maternal over-control, such that patterns of consistently high BI predicted higher adolescent SA symptoms in the presence of high maternal over-control. High BI across childhood was not significantly associated with adolescent SA symptoms when children experienced low maternal over-control. These findings have the potential to inform prevention and early intervention programs by indentifying particularly at-risk youth and specific targets of treatment.
    Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology 07/2012; 40(8):1363-73. DOI:10.1007/s10802-012-9663-2 · 3.09 Impact Factor
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    • "Keeping in mind the significant overlap in symptoms between depression and anxiety disorders, prevention studies should focus on both. Indeed, epidemiological studies have found that elevated symptoms of anxiety and depression occur in offspring of both anxious [30] and depressed patients [31]. Since the aetiology and pathogenesis of anxiety and depression also have considerable overlap, including offspring from patients with both mood and anxiety disorders provides the opportunity to study common mediating factors. "
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    ABSTRACT: Anxiety and mood disorders are highly prevalent and pose a huge burden on patients. Their offspring is at increased risk of developing these disorders as well, indicating a clear need for prevention of psychopathology in this group. Given high comorbidity and non-specificity of intergenerational transmission of disorders, prevention programs should target both anxiety and depression. Further, while the indication for preventive interventions is often elevated symptoms, offspring with other high risk profiles may also benefit from resilience-based prevention programs. The current STERK-study (Screening and Training: Enhancing Resilience in Kids) is a randomized controlled clinical trial combining selected and indicated prevention: it is targeted at both high risk individuals without symptoms and at those with subsyndromal symptoms. Individuals without symptoms meet two of three criteria of the High Risk Index (HRI; female gender, both parents affected, history of a parental suicide (attempt). This index was developed in an earlier study and corresponds with elevated risk in offspring of depressed patients. Children aged 8-17 years (nā€‰=ā€‰204) with subthreshold symptoms or meeting the criteria on the HRI are randomised to one of two treatment conditions, namely (a) 10 weekly individual child CBT sessions and 2 parent sessions or (b) minimal information. Assessments are held at pre-test, post-test and at 12 and 24 months follow-up. Primary outcome is the time to onset of a mood or anxiety disorder in the offspring. Secondary outcome measures include number of days with depression or anxiety, child and parent symptom levels, quality of life, and cost-effectiveness. Based on models of aetiology of mood and anxiety disorders as well as mechanisms of change during interventions, we selected potential mediators and moderators of treatment outcome, namely coping, parent-child interaction, self-associations, optimism/pessimism, temperament, and emotion processing. The current intervention trial aims to significantly reduce the risk of intergenerational transmission of mood and anxiety disorders with a short and well targeted intervention that is directed at strengthening the resilience in potentially vulnerable children. We plan to evaluate the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of such an intervention and to identify mechanisms of change. NTR2888.
    BMC Psychiatry 04/2012; 12(1):31. DOI:10.1186/1471-244X-12-31 · 2.21 Impact Factor
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