Psychological characteristics of early remitters in patients with panic disorder

Hee Jin Park, Eui Jung Kim, Jeong Il Ku, Jong Min Woo, Seung Hwan Lee, Sang Keun Chung, Sang Yeol Lee, Youl Ri Kim, Eun Ho Kang, Jae Hon Lee, Ji Hae Kim, Bum Hee Yu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


We aimed to examine whether anxiety sensitivity and agoraphobic fear could affect the time taken to remission after 24 weeks of open-label escitalopram treatment of patients with panic disorder (PD). We recruited 158 patients, and 101 patients completed the study. Clinical severity and psychological characteristics were assessed at baseline and 4, 12, and 24 weeks after the treatment, using the Clinical Global Impression-Severity (CGI-S), the Hamilton Rating Scales for Anxiety and Depression, the Anxiety Sensitivity Index-Revised (ASI-R), the Albany Panic and Phobia Questionnaire (APPQ), and the Panic Disorder Severity Scale (PDSS). Remission was defined as the absence of full panic attacks and PDSS scores of 7 or less. Completing patients were stratified according to the time taken to remit: early (n= 20) and late (n= 58) remission and non-remission groups (n= 23). There were no significant differences among the three groups at baseline on the CGI-S and the PDSS mean scores. However, early remitters had significantly lower scores than late remitters and non-remitters on the ASI-R and APPQ. In conclusion, anxiety sensitivity and agoraphobic fear can affect the time to remission after pharmacotherapy, and clinicians should consider the psychological characteristics of PD patients in order to achieve an optimal response to pharmacotherapy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)237-241
Number of pages5
JournalPsychiatry Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - 30 May 2012


  • Agoraphobia
  • Anxiety sensitivity
  • Escitalopram
  • Remission


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