"Anger attacks": possible variants of panic and major depressive disorders

Am J Psychiatry. 1990 Jul;147(7):867-70. doi: 10.1176/ajp.147.7.867.


The authors report a series of illustrative cases in which patients presented with sudden "spells" of anger with physical features that resembled panic attacks but lacked the affects of fear and anxiety. These spells or "attacks" of anger were experienced as uncharacteristic and were inappropriate to the situations in which they occurred. Since treatment of these attacks with antidepressants produced in each case marked improvements in behavior, the authors also formulate some hypotheses as to the nature of these episodes.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anger*
  • Anxiety Disorders / diagnosis
  • Anxiety Disorders / drug therapy
  • Anxiety Disorders / psychology*
  • Clomipramine / therapeutic use
  • Clonazepam / therapeutic use
  • Depressive Disorder / diagnosis
  • Depressive Disorder / drug therapy
  • Depressive Disorder / psychology*
  • Desipramine / therapeutic use
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Fear*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Panic*
  • Retrospective Studies


  • Clonazepam
  • Clomipramine
  • Desipramine