Explained and unexplained medical symptoms in generalized anxiety and panic disorder: Relationship to the somatoform disorders

James G. Barbee, Alexandre A. Todorov, Andrzej R. Kuczmierczyk, Donna M. Mancuso, John J. Schwab, Richard J Maddock, Rudolf Hoehn-Saric, Lee Ann Kelley, Jonathan R T Davidson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Scopus citations

Abstract

We have examined the numbers and types of symptoms in a sample of 90 patients with generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) and 77 patients with panic disorder (PD) collected from six different sites during the conduct of a multicenter clinical trial. This information was obtained utilizing the Health Questionnaire, a 47-item self-report list of medical symptoms, patterned after the Somatization Disorder section of the Diagnostic Interview Schedule. Although the patients in this sample had a wide variety of medically explained and unexplained physical symptoms, none of them qualified for a diagnosis of somatization disorder by DSM-III-R criteria. GAD and PD patients reported remarkably similar numbers of explained and unexplained medical symptoms. The panoply of somatic symptoms presented by these patients presents a formidable diagnostic challenge for clinicians. These findings suggest that the pattern of overutilization of medical services that is well documented for PD patients may also be found for GAD patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)149-155
Number of pages7
JournalAnnals of Clinical Psychiatry
Volume9
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 1997

Keywords

  • Generalized anxiety
  • Panic
  • Physical symptomatology
  • Somatization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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    Barbee, J. G., Todorov, A. A., Kuczmierczyk, A. R., Mancuso, D. M., Schwab, J. J., Maddock, R. J., Hoehn-Saric, R., Kelley, L. A., & Davidson, J. R. T. (1997). Explained and unexplained medical symptoms in generalized anxiety and panic disorder: Relationship to the somatoform disorders. Annals of Clinical Psychiatry, 9(3), 149-155. https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1026225923747