Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home

Cognitive Aspects of Panic Attacks: Content, Course and Relationship to Laboratory Stressors

  • D. Zucker (a1), C. B. Taylor (a2), M. Brouillard (a3), A. Ehlers (a4), J. Margraf (a5), M. Telch (a6), W. T. Roth (a2) and W. S. Agras (a2)...

Abstract

Twenty patients with panic attacks and ten controls were given a standardised interview about thoughts occurring during times of anxiety or panic attacks. The interviewer was blind to the subject's diagnosis. The 20 panic patients underwent a psychophysiological test battery which included a cold pressor test, mental arithmetic task, and 5.5% CO2 inhalation. More patients than controls reported thoughts centred on fears of losing control and shame when anxious. Panic patients rated their thoughts as stronger and clearer than did controls and they had more difficulty excluding them from their minds. A feeling of anxiety preceded anxious thoughts in patients. This suggests that ‘faulty cognitions' are not the initial event in a panic attack, although anxious thoughts may exacerbate or maintain them. Significant correlations were found between the intensity of anxiety-related thoughts in anticipation of mental arithmetic and changes in diastolic blood pressure and heart rate during mental arithmetic.

    • Send article to Kindle

      To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

      Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

      Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

      Cognitive Aspects of Panic Attacks
      Available formats
      ×

      Send article to Dropbox

      To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

      Cognitive Aspects of Panic Attacks
      Available formats
      ×

      Send article to Google Drive

      To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

      Cognitive Aspects of Panic Attacks
      Available formats
      ×

Copyright

Corresponding author

Behavioral Medicine Program, Department of Psychiatry, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA 94305-5490 USA

References

Hide All
American Psychiatric Association (1987) Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (3rd edn, revised) (DSM-III-R). Washington DC: APA.
Beck, A. T., Emery, G. D. & Greenberg, R. (1985) Anxiety Disorders and Phobias, a Cognitive Perspective. New York: Basic Books.
Beck, A. T., Laude, R. & Bohnert, M. (1974) Ideational components of anxiety neurosis. Archives of General Psychiatry, 31, 319325.
Brouillard, M. (1988) Effects of behavioral, cognitive behavioral, and drug treatments on the catastrophic fears of agoraphobics. Unpublished dissertation, Stanford University.
Clark, D. M. (1986) A cognitive model of panic. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 24, 461470.
Ehlers, A., Margraf, J. & Roth, W. T. (1988a) Interaction of expectancy effects and stressors in a laboratory model of panic. In Neurobiological Approaches to Human Disease (eds Hellhammer D., Florin I. & Weiner H.). Toronto: Huber.
Ehlers, A., Margraf, J. & Roth, W. T. (1988b) Selective information processing, interoception, and panic attacks. In Treatment of Panic and Phobias (eds Hand I. & Wittchen H. U.). Berlin: Springer.
Goldstein, A. J. & Chambless, D. L. (1978) A reanalysis of agoraphobia. Behavior Therapy, 9, 4759.
Gorman, J., Askanazi, J., Liebowitz, M., et al (1984) Response to hyperventilation in a group of patients with panic disorder. American Journal of Psychiatry, 141, 857861.
Hamilton, M. (1959) The assessment of anxiety state by ratings. British Journal of Medical Psychology, 32, 5055.
Hibbert, G. A. (1984) Ideational components of anxiety. British Journal of Psychiatry, 144, 618624.
Horowitz, M. J., Simon, N., Holden, M., et al (1983) The stressful impact of news of risk for premature heart disease. Psychosomatic Medicine, 45, 3240.
Lader, M. (1975) The Psychophysiology of Mental Illness. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul.
Ley, R. (1985) Agoraphobia, the panic attack and hyperventilation syndrome. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 23, 7981.
Margraf, J., Ehlers, A. & Roth, W. T. (1986) Biological models of panic disorder and agoraphobia: a review. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 24, 553567.
Mathews, A. M., Gelder, M. G. & Johnston, D. W. (1981) Agoraphobia: Nature and Treatment. New York: Guilford Press.
Ottaviani, R. & Beck, S. T. (1987) Cognitive aspects of panic disorders. Journal of Anxiety Disorders, 1, 1528.
Rapee, R. (1985) Distinction between panic disorder and generalized anxiety disorder: clinical presentation. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 19, 227232.
Speilberger, C. D., Gorsuch, R. L. & Lushene, R. E. (1970) State-Trait Anxiety Inventory. Palo Alto: Consulting Psychologists Press.
Spitzer, R. L. & Williams, J. B. (1983) Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-III. New York: New York State Psychiatric Institute.
Telch, M. J. (1984) Stanford Panic Appraisal Inventory. Unpublished scale, Stanford University.
Van den Hout, M. A. (1988) The explanation of experimental panic. In Panic: Psychological Perspectives (eds Rachman S. & Maser J. D.). Hillsdale, N. J.: Lawrence Erlbaum.
Ward, M. M., Mefford, I. N., Parker, D., et al (1983) Epinephrine and norepinephrine responses in continuously collected human plasma to a series of stressors. Psychosomatic Medicine, 45, 471486.

Cognitive Aspects of Panic Attacks: Content, Course and Relationship to Laboratory Stressors

  • D. Zucker (a1), C. B. Taylor (a2), M. Brouillard (a3), A. Ehlers (a4), J. Margraf (a5), M. Telch (a6), W. T. Roth (a2) and W. S. Agras (a2)...

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed

Cognitive Aspects of Panic Attacks: Content, Course and Relationship to Laboratory Stressors

  • D. Zucker (a1), C. B. Taylor (a2), M. Brouillard (a3), A. Ehlers (a4), J. Margraf (a5), M. Telch (a6), W. T. Roth (a2) and W. S. Agras (a2)...
Submit a response

eLetters

No eLetters have been published for this article.

×

Reply to: Submit a response


Your details


Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *