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J Nerv Ment Dis. 1997 Jun;185(6):368-72.

The quality of life and employment in panic disorder.

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  • 1Panic, Anxiety, and Depression Center of Virginia, Richmond, USA.


Our purpose was to measure quality of life (QOL) and work productivity (WP) in persons with panic disorder. Eighty-four panic disorder patients with limited psychiatric comorbidity for ten U.S. outpatient mental health centers were evaluated in a cross-sectional design. Patients self-administered the Medical Outcomes Study 36-Item Short Form Health Survey (SF-36) and Work Productivity and Impairment (WPAI) questionnaire. The independent effects of psychiatric comorbidity were addressed through entry criteria, stratification, and regression analyses. QOL scores are significantly below age and sex-adjusted population norms on all SF-36 measures (p < .01). We note far greater impairment on measures of mental and emotional versus physical well-being. The unemployment rate among these patients is 25%, and only 57% are employed full-time. Those who are employed rated their WP as low. This sample of outpatients suffer marked QOL and employment impairment, which is only partially explained by the presence of psychiatric comorbidity.

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