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The relation of anxiety sensitivity to higher and lower order personality dimensions: implications for the etiology of panic attacks.

Authors
Type
Published Article
Journal
Journal of abnormal psychology
Publication Date
Volume
106
Issue
4
Pages
539–544
Identifiers
PMID: 9358684
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

The relation of anxiety sensitivity (AS) to personality dimensions has received little attention. In this study, 4 AS indexes were administered along with measures of personality, fears, and panic attacks to 220 undergraduates. At the higher order level, AS was positively correlated with negative emotionality (NE) but was largely unrelated to either positive emotionality or constraint. At the lower order level, AS was positively correlated with absorption and NE indexes. Most of these correlations were significant even among participants with no panic attack history. AS exhibited incremental validity above and beyond a number of personality variables, including absorption and trait anxiety, in the prediction of fears and panic attack history. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that a propensity toward immersion in sensory experiences is a diathesis for panic attacks.

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