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Heart patients with anxiety disorder experience more cardiovascular events, deaths
Date:7/5/2010

mes in patients with coronary heart disease," the authors write. Anxiety may be associated with surges in catecholamines, "fight or flight" hormones that may be related to heart risks, they suggest. Alternatively, patients with anxiety may be more likely to seek care when they have symptoms and therefore be more likely to receive a diagnosis of stroke or heart attack, although this would not explain the increased risk of death. It is also possible that a common underlying factor predisposes individuals to both anxiety and heart events.

"These findings have implications for clinical practice and research," they conclude. "Generalized anxiety disorder may be considered a prognostic factor in patients with coronary heart disease and could be used in risk stratification. Evaluation and treatment of anxiety may also be considered as part of the comprehensive management of patients with coronary heart disease. Research programs designed to advance our understanding of the impact of generalized anxiety disorders on medical prognosis and biobehavioral mechanisms that link anxiety to mortality in the context of coronary heart disease are needed to develop evidence-based approaches to improving patient care."


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Contact: Elisabeth J. Martens, Ph.D.
e.j.martens@uvt.nl
JAMA and Archives Journals
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

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