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Psychiatry Res. 2009 Feb 28;165(3):273-80. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2007.10.016. Epub 2009 Jan 21.

Social anxiety and dissociation among male patients with alcohol dependency.

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  • 1Research, Treatment and Training Center for Alcohol and Substance Dependence (AMATEM), Bakirkoy State Hospital for Psychiatric and Neurological Diseases, Istanbul, Turkey.


The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between social anxiety and dissociation among male patients with alcohol dependency. Participants were 176 male patients consecutively admitted to an alcohol dependency treatment unit. The Liebowitz Social Anxiety Scale, the Dissociative Experiences Scale, the Beck Depression Inventory, the Spielberger State and Trait Anxiety Inventory, the Michigan Alcoholism Screening Test, and the Symptom Checklist-90-Revised were administered to all participants. The dissociative (N=58, 33.0%) group had significantly higher social anxiety scores than the non-dissociative participants. Patients with a history of suicide attempt or childhood abuse had elevated social anxiety scores compared to those without. In multivariate analysis, dissociative taxon membership predicted both of the two social anxiety subscale scores consisting of fear/anxiety and avoidance in a highly significant level while trait anxiety was a significant covariant for these subscales. Among dissociative symptoms, only depersonalization and amnesia/fugue were predictors of social anxiety. Dissociation and social anxiety are interrelated among alcohol-dependent men. This relationship may have implications for prevention and treatment of alcohol dependency among men with a childhood trauma history in particular.

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