Gender and presence of profound psychological traumas versus comorbidity of panic disorder and depression in difficult and aspirin-induced asthma
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Arch Psych Psych 2012;14(1):29–35
Aim. The author examined psychiatrically a group of 106 patients with difficult asthma and 100 patients with aspirin-induced asthma. The special interest of the study was the link between different types of traumas that the patients from both groups had throughout their lives and comorbidity of panic and depressive symptoms that indicate severe and persistent course of common psychiatric problem. Methods. 106 consecutive adults with confirmed, physician-diagnosed difficult asthma and 100 patients with aspirin-induced asthma underwent psychiatric interview and assessment using M.I.N.I5.0, Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and Panic and Agoraphobia Scale (PAS). Psychiatric assessment was performed by experienced liaison psychiatrist according to ICD-10 and DSM-IV diagnosis. In difficult asthma group there were 78 women (74%) and 28 men (26%). The average age was 51.3 (SD=14.5) for women and 47.5 (SD=12.7) for men. In aspirin induced asthma group there were 66 women (66%) and 34 men (34%). The average age was 52.7 (SD=12.3) for women and 48.8 (SD=13.0) for men. Results. In both groups of asthmatic patients women were majority (74% with difficult asthma and 66% with aspirin-induced asthma) with higher level of panic and depressive symptoms than men. Also comorbidity of these symptoms distinguishes the group of women as more at risk of intense psychiatric vulnerability. Conclusions. It is possible that psychological traumas affect the development, course and severity of complex psychiatric symptoms in asthmatic patients. It may play a special role in etiology of difficult asthma.