Panic Disorder and Cardiac Risk


The reason for increased cardiac mortality in panic disorder has not been precisely identified, but possibly is due to chronic activation of the cardiac stimulant (sympathetic) nerves, which may predispose the individual with panic disorder to disorders of cardiac rhythm and coronary artery spasm. The uniqueness of this study lies in its comprehensive evaluation of a psychobiological approach to the treatment of panic disorder using change in biological, behavioural and psychological variables as criteria for efficacy. 50 patients aged between 18 and 60 years will be recruited; both males and females. They will be treated with either cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) or SSRI (selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitor) antidepressants or a combination of both.

Official Title

Panic Disorder and Cardiac Risk: Evaluation of a Psychological Treatment Which Addresses Biology, Psychology and Behaviour


Panic Disorder

Study Type


Study Design

Treatment, Randomized, Open Label, Active Control, Parallel Assignment, Pharmacodynamics Study

Further Details

Study Start

June 2002; Expected completion: December 2008

Eligibility & Criteria

  • Ages Eligible for Study: 18 Years – 65 Years
  • Genders Eligible for Study: Both

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Panic disorder

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Comorbid heart disease
  • Comorbid significant psychiatric illness
  • Significant suicide risk
  • HIV/AIDS hepatitis B/c

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