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date: 23 October 2018

Abstract and Keywords

Panic and phobic disorders are common and serious psychiatric conditions. The first part of this chapter presents the commonalities and unique characteristics of the diagnostic definitions, phenomenology, and associated features of panic disorder, agoraphobia, social anxiety disorder (social phobia), and specific phobia. The second part discusses some of the specific and common psychological factors that maintain the disorder, including panic attacks and dysfunctional cognitions. Biological models and psychological theories are discussed. It is concluded that the challenge of the upcoming new edition of the DSM is to address the complexities of the relationship between these diagnostic categories within the framework of a parsimonious classification system.

Keywords: agoraphobia, cognitions, diagnostic, maintaining factors, nosology, panic attack, panic disorder, phenomenology, phobia, social anxiety disorder

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