Anxiety Sensitivity: Theory, Research, and Treatment of the Fear of Anxiety

By Steven Taylor | Go to book overview

on the total score for the original 16-item scale suggests that the ASI is a highly valid measure of AS. New developments include subscales based on ASI factor scores, modified ASI scales with items removed, and new, expanded scales. For each of these measures, more research is needed on their psychometric properties; norms need to be established before being adopted for clinical use.

It is important to note that the ASI is not just a measure of panic or agoraphobia. As a measure of the continuum of AS across normal and clinical populations, the ASI appears to measure the general dimension of AS. Consistent with this view, the ASI predicts anxiety-related behavior among normal as well as clinical samples. The ASI discriminates diagnostic groups (especially anxiety disorders) from normal controls in theoretically expected ways. The ASI has also been shown to provide important information in the study of chronic pain and drug and alcohol abuse. Theoretically, other measures of AS should be performed in a similar fashion, although this remains to be seen. At this time, only the ASI has research support as a well-normed, reliable, and valid measure of the general dimension of AS.


REFERENCES

Argyle N., Deltito J., Allerup P., Maier W., Albus M., Nutzinger D., Rasmussen S., Ayuso J. L., & Beech P. ( 1991). "The Panic-Associated Symptom Scale: Measuring the severity of panic disorder". Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica, 83, 20-26.

Arrindell W. A. ( 1993a). "The fear of fear concept: Stability, retest, artifact and predictive power". Behaviour Research and Therapy, 31, 139-148.

Arrindell W. A. ( 1993b). "The fear of fear concept: Evidence in favour of multidimensionality". Behaviour Research and Therapy, 31, 507-518.

Asmundson G. J. G., & Norton C. R. ( 1995). "Anxiety sensitivity in patients with physically unexplained chronic back pain: A preliminary report". Behaviour Research and Therapy, 33,771-777.

Asmundson G. J. G., Norton G. R., Lanthier N. J., & Cox B. ( 1996). "Fear of anxiety: Do current measures assess unique aspects of the construct?" Personality and Individual Differences, 20, 607-612.

Bandelow B. ( 1995). "Assessing the efficacy of treatments for panic disorder and agoraphobia: II. The Panic and Agoraphobia Scale". International Clinical Psychopharmacology, 10,73-81.

Blais M. A., Otto M. W., Zucker B. G., McNally R. J., Fava M., & Pollack M. H. ( 1997). Structure of the Anxiety Sensitivity Index: I. Suggestions for scale refinement based on item and factor analyses. Manuscript in preparation.

Bouchard S., Pelletier M. H., Gauthier J. G., Cote G., & Laberge B. ( 1997). "The assessment of panic using self-report: A comprehensive survey of validated instruments". Journal of Anxiety Disorders, 11, 89-111.

Carr R. E., Lehrer P. M., Rausch R. L., & Hochron S. M. ( 1994). "Anxiety sensitivity and panic attacks in an asthmatic population". Behaviour Research and Therapy, 32, 411-418.

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