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Cult Med Psychiatry. 2005 Dec;29(4):415-31.

Ataques de nervios in relation to anxiety sensitivity among island Puerto Ricans.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, American University, Washington, District of Columbia 20016-8062, USA.


This study investigated the symptom profile of ataques de nervios (ADN) among Puerto Rican volunteers from the community who self-identified as having experienced at least one ataque. As expected, the most commonly reported ataques-specific symptoms were crying, anger, nervousness, and becoming hysterical. Comparing the responses of those with ADN to those with no history of ADN but who reported elevated anxiety sensitivity (AS) indicated that both groups were comparable on measures of depression, state and trait anxiety, and associated panic symptoms. As expected, both groups scored significantly higher on all measures than did participants with no history of ADN and low AS with the exception of the measure of state anxiety. It is unclear, however, whether the overlap in symptom severity between those with ADN and those with elevated anxiety sensitivity indicates that ADN and AS are the same or distinct conditions.

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