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Previous studies of the dimensional structure of panic attack symptoms have mostly identified a respiratory and a vestibular/mixed somatic dimension. Evidence for additional dimensions such as a cardiac dimension and the allocation of several of the panic attack symptom criteria is less consistent. Clarifying the dimensional structure of the panic attack symptoms should help to specify the relationship of potential risk factors like anxiety sensitivity and fear of suffocation to the experience of panic attacks and the development of panic disorder.
In an outpatient multicentre study 350 panic patients with agoraphobia rated the intensity of each of the ten DSM-IV bodily symptoms during a typical panic attack. The factor structure of these data was investigated with nonlinear confirmatory factor analysis (CFA). The identified bodily symptom dimensions were related to panic cognitions, anxiety sensitivity and fear of suffocation by means of nonlinear structural equation modelling (SEM).
CFA indicated a respiratory, a vestibular/mixed somatic and a cardiac dimension of the bodily symptom criteria. These three factors were differentially associated with specific panic cognitions, different anxiety sensitivity facets and suffocation fear.
Taking into account the dimensional structure of panic attack symptoms may help to increase the specificity of the associations between the experience of panic attack symptoms and various panic related constructs.
Farm Service Agency (FSA) direct loans are intended to provide transitory credit to creditworthy borrowers unable to obtain conventional credit at reasonable terms. Farm loan program (FLP) effectiveness is measured in part by how readily direct loan borrowers graduate to conventional credit. A survey of FSA borrowers originating direct loans during fiscal years 1994-1996 is used to estimate graduation rates. A majority of 1994-1996 loan originators did exit the direct FLP by November 2004. A multinomial logit model indicates financial strength at origination resulted in greater likelihood of farming without direct loans approximately 9 years after loan origination.
The temporal course of startle reflex modulation
and autonomic response patterns to fear-relevant and fear-irrelevant
pictures in subjects with high and low levels of animal
fear was investigated. Thirty-eight high-fear and 48 low-fear
volunteers viewed photos of snakes and spiders and pictures
of neutral and pleasant content. The slides were presented
for 6 s or for only 150 ms, depending on the group. Acoustic
startle probes were presented at five different times after
slide onset. Relative potentiation of the startle responses
started 300 ms after onset of snake/spider pictures in
fearful subjects. This fear-potentiated startle effect
was maintained for the later probe times and was identical
in the 150-ms condition. Fear-relevant pictures also prompted
a sympathetically dominated autonomic response profile
in fearful persons. These data support the idea that fear
can be activated very rapidly, requiring only minimal stimulus
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