The evaluation of metacognitive beliefs and emotion recognition in panic disorder and generalized anxiety disorder: effects on symptoms and comparison with healthy control

Nord J Psychiatry. 2019 May-Jul;73(4-5):293-301. doi: 10.1080/08039488.2019.1623317. Epub 2019 Jun 3.


Background: The impairments in metacognitive functions and emotion recognition are considered as liable factors in anxiety disorders. Aims: The better understanding of these cognitive abilities might lead to develop more accurate treatment methods for patients who suffer from anxiety. Methods: Forty-four patients with panic disorder (PD), 37 individuals with generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) and 44 healthy control (HC) were participated in our study. Metacognition questionnaire-30 (MCQ-30), Reading The Mind From The Eyes Test and symptom severity tests were administered. Results: Statistical analyses estimated the dysfunctional metacognitive beliefs and disrupted emotion recognition in patients relative to HC. The 'need to control thoughts' aspect of metacognitive beliefs was accounted for symptom severity in GAD. Improper metacognitive beliefs were significantly predicted the PD and GAD. In addition, impoverished emotion recognition predicted the GAD. Conclusions: Our study revealed the role of inconvenient metacognitive beliefs and distorted emotion recognition in PD and GAD. These findings might facilitate the treatment management in cognitive therapies of anxiety disorders via pointing out more reasonable targets across improper cognitive fields.

Keywords: Metacognitive beliefs; cognitive therapy; emotion recognition; generalized anxiety disorder; metacognition; panic disorder.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anxiety Disorders / diagnosis
  • Anxiety Disorders / psychology*
  • Anxiety Disorders / therapy
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy / methods
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Emotions / physiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Metacognition / physiology*
  • Middle Aged
  • Panic Disorder / diagnosis
  • Panic Disorder / psychology*
  • Panic Disorder / therapy
  • Surveys and Questionnaires*