Is anxiety sensitivity a predictor of PTSD in children and adolescents?
ABSTRACT Anxiety sensitivity (AS) is the fear of the physical symptoms of anxiety and related symptoms. Longitudinal studies support AS as a vulnerability factor for development of anxiety disorders. This study aimed to investigate AS as a vulnerability factor in the development of childhood posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) following traumatic experiences.
The study included 81 children 8-15 years of age who experienced the 1999 earthquake in Bolu, Turkey. The earthquake survivors were compared to a randomized group of age- and sex-matched controls 5 years after the earthquake. Both the subject and control groups were administered the Childhood Anxiety Sensitivity Index (CASI), State and Trait Anxiety Inventory for Children (STAI-C), and Child Depression Inventory (CDI), while the PTSD symptoms of the subjects were assessed using the Child Posttraumatic Stress Reaction Index (CPTS-RI).
Subjects and controls did not differ significantly in CASI, STAI-C, or CDI scores. Multiple regression analysis showed that both trait anxiety and CASI scores predicted CPTS-RI scores of the subjects; the prediction by CASI scores was over and above the effect of trait anxiety.
The results of this study support the hypothesis that AS may be a constitutional factor, which might increase the risk of PTSD following traumatic experiences.
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ABSTRACT: Psychometric studies indicate that anxiety sensitivity (AS) is a risk factor for anxiety disorders such as panic disorder (PD). To better understand the psychophysiological basis of AS and its relation to clinical anxiety, we examined whether high-AS individuals show similarly elevated reactivity to inhalations of carbon dioxide (CO2) as previously reported for PD and social phobia in this task. Healthy individuals with high and low AS were exposed to eight standardized inhalations of 20% CO2-enriched air, preceded and followed by inhalations of room air. Anxiety and dyspnea, in addition to autonomic and respiratory responses were measured every 15s. Throughout the task, high AS participants showed a respiratory pattern of faster, shallower breathing and reduced inhalation of CO2 indicative of anticipatory or contextual anxiety. In addition, they showed elevated dyspnea responses to the second set of air inhalations accompanied by elevated heart rate, which could be due to sensitization or conditioning. Respiratory abnormalities seem to be common to high AS individuals and PD patients when considering previous findings with this task. Similarly, sensitization or conditioning of anxious and dyspneic symptoms might be common to high AS and clinical anxiety. Respiratory conditionability deserves greater attention in anxiety disorder research.Psychiatry Research 03/2013; · 2.46 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVE: Our aims were to investigate the prevalence of PTSD, depression, anxiety-related disorders, and dissociative symptomotology, and to assess the risk factors for development of psychopathology among children and adolescents after the 2011 Van earthquake in Turkey. METHODS: The screening was conducted among 738 participants at 6months post-earthquake using the CPTSD-Reaction Index, State and Trait Anxiety Inventory for Children, Screen for Child Anxiety Related Emotional Disorders, Child Depression Inventory, Childhood Anxiety Sensitivity Index, Metacognitions Questionnaire for Children, and Adolescent Dissociative Experiences Scale. RESULTS: Less than half (40.69% of) of the participants reported severe levels of PTSD symptoms, 53.04% were at greater risk for developing an anxiety-related disorder, 37.70% met the criteria for clinical depression, and 36.73% revealed pathological levels of dissociative symptomotology. State-trait anxiety, and anxiety sensitivity were significant antecedents of psychopathology. CONCLUSION: We concluded that anxiety sensitivity is a significant risk factor in various types of psychopathology, but metacognitions seem to have a limited utility in accounting for poor psychological outcomes in young survivors of earthquake.Comprehensive psychiatry 05/2013; · 2.08 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND:: Evidence of pain alterations in trauma-exposed individuals has been found. The presence of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) may be explaining these alterations, as some of the psychological characteristics of PTSD are hypothesized to increase pain response. OBJECTIVES:: To examine differences in pain response and in certain psychological variables between trauma-exposed women (TEW) with PTSD, TEW without PTSD, and non-trauma-exposed women (NTEW) and to explore the role of these psychological variables in the differences in pain response between the groups. METHODS:: A total of 122 female students completed a cold pressor task (42 TEW with PTSD, 40 TEW without PTSD, and 40 NTEW). Anxiety sensitivity, experiential avoidance, trait and state dissociation, depressive symptoms, state anxiety, catastrophizing, and arousal were assessed. RESULTS:: TEW with PTSD reported significantly higher pain unpleasantness than NTEW, but not more than that of TEW without PTSD. They also presented higher trait dissociation, state anxiety, depressive symptoms, and skin conductance than the other 2 groups and higher anxiety sensitivity than TEW without PTSD. TEW without PTSD reported more pain unpleasantness than NTEW, but they recovered faster from pain. However, these differences were not explained by any psychological variable. CONCLUSIONS:: The results suggest that although trauma-exposed individuals are not more sensitive to painful stimulation, they evaluate pain in a more negative way. Exposure to trauma itself, but not to PTSD, may explain the differences found in pain unpleasantness.The Clinical journal of pain 11/2012; · 3.01 Impact Factor