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Type: Journal article
Title: Evidence-based medicine evaluation of electrophysiological studies of the anxiety disorders
Author: Clark, C.
Galletly, C.
Ash, D.
Moores, K.
Penrose, R.
McFarlane, A.
Citation: Clinical EEG and Neuroscience, 2009; 40(2):84-112
Publisher: Electroencephalography and Clinical Neuroscience Society
Issue Date: 2009
ISSN: 1550-0594
Statement of
Clark C. Richard, Galletly Cherrie A., Ash David J., Moores Kathryn A., Penrose Rebecca A. and McFarlane Alexander C.
Abstract: We provide a systematic, evidence-based medicine (EBM) review of the field of electrophysiology in the anxiety disorders. Presently, electrophysiological studies of anxiety focus primarily on etiological aspects of brain dysfunction. The review highlights many functional similarities across studies, but also identifies patterns that clearly differentiate disorder classifications. Such measures offer clinical utility as reliable and objective indicators of brain dysfunction in individuals and indicate potential as biomarkers for the improvement of diagnostic specificity and for informing treatment decisions and prognostic assessments. Common to most of the anxiety disorders is basal instability in cortical arousal, as reflected in measures of quantitative electroencephalography (qEEG). Resting electroencephalographic (EEG) measures tend to correlate with symptom sub-patterns and be exacerbated by condition-specific stimulation. Also common to most of the anxiety disorders are condition-specific difficulties with sensory gating and the allocation and deployment of attention. These are clearly evident from evoked potential (EP) and event-related potential (ERP) electrical measures of information processing in obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), panic disorder (PD), generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) and the phobias. Other ERP measures clearly differentiate the disorders. However, there is considerable variation across studies, with inclusion and exclusion criteria, medication status and control group selection not standardized within condition or across studies. Study numbers generally preclude analysis for confound removal or for the derivation of diagnostic biomarker patterns at this time. The current trend towards development of databases of brain and cognitive function is likely to obviate these difficulties. In particular, electrophysiological measures of function are likely to play a significant role in the development and subsequent adaptations of DSM-V and assist critically in securing improvements in nosological and treatment specificity.
Keywords: Brain; Humans; Electroencephalography; Deep Brain Stimulation; Anxiety Disorders; Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder; Panic Disorder; Phobic Disorders; Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic; Evidence-Based Medicine; Evoked Potentials
Rights: © 2009 CBS Interactive. All rights reserved.
RMID: 0020090696
DOI: 10.1177/155005940904000208
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Appears in Collections:Psychiatry publications

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