The detection of panic disorder in chest pain patients

Gen Hosp Psychiatry. Sep-Oct 1999;21(5):323-32. doi: 10.1016/s0163-8343(99)00037-7.


The aims of this study were to 1) develop a detection model for recognizing panic disorder (PD), 2) develop a simple questionnaire as a screening instrument for PD detection, and 3) test in an outpatient cardiological chest pain population a detection model for panic disorder previously described by Fleet et al. [20]. Logistic regression analysis was performed to explore factors predictive of panic disorder and to test the cross-cardiological setting constancy of the Fleet model in 199 chest pain patients without previously known heart disease referred to cardiological outpatient investigation of chest pain. The SCL-90 somatization subscale, Agoraphobia Cognitions Questionnaire, chest pain quality, pain localization, and age were the best predictors of the presence of panic disorder. This model correctly classified 78% of the subjects. The sum-score of a three-item questionnaire correctly classified 74% of the subjects, while the previously described model by Fleet et al. correctly classified 73% of the subjects. A detection model and a screening questionnaire are proposed to improve the recognition of PD in this chest pain population. This study partly supports the cross-setting validity of a previously described detection model.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Chest Pain / psychology*
  • Coronary Disease / diagnosis
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pain Measurement
  • Panic Disorder / complications
  • Panic Disorder / diagnosis*
  • Physical Examination
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales / standards
  • Sampling Studies
  • Sensitivity and Specificity