Unexpected arousal, anxiety sensitivity, and their interaction on CO2-induced panic: Further evidence for the context-sensitivity vulnerability model
SourceJournal of Anxiety Disorders, 25, 5, (2011), pp. 645-653
Article / Letter to editor
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SW OZ BSI KLP
Journal of Anxiety Disorders
SubjectExperimental Psychopathology and Treatment
The present experiment tested several predictions derived from the context-sensitivity vulnerability model of panic. Participants (N = 79) scoring either high or low in anxiety sensitivity (AS) and with no history of unexpected panic were randomly assigned to one of two instructional sets: expected arousal (EA) or expected relaxation (ER). All participants were administered inhalation of room air and 35% CO2 in a counterbalanced order. Consistent with theoretical predictions, High-AS participants who received ER instructions showed greater emotional responding compared to High-AS participants who received EA instructions, while instructional set did not affect responding among Low-AS participants. Panic attacks were observed in 52% of the High-AS-ER group compared to 17%, 5%, and 5% in the High-AS-EA, Low-AS-ER, and Low-AS-EA groups respectively. These findings are consistent with the theory's assertion that dispositional tendencies, such as anxiety sensitivity potentiate the panicogenic effects of threat-relevant context variables.
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