Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

'Poor Health Behaviors' May Link Anxiety, Stroke

Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

'Poor Health Behaviors' May Link Anxiety, Stroke

Article excerpt

FROM STROKE

The more anxious you are, the greater your chances of an incident stroke, results from a prospective analysis demonstrated. The association was independent of other known risk factors including depression, researchers led by Maya J. Lambiase, Ph.D., reported online in December 2013, in the journal.

"Results indicated a dose-response relation between anxiety and stroke," according to Dr. Lambiase, a cardiovascular behavioral medicine researcher in the department of psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh, and her associates. "Exploratory analyses suggest that behavioral factors, particularly smoking and physical activity may be important pathways to consider."

Over a period of 22 years, the researchers studied a nationally

representative sample of 6,019 people aged 25-74 years from the first National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES I), which was conducted from 1971 to 1975. At baseline, all study participants underwent an in-person structured interview, physical exam, and blood draw, and they completed psychological questionnaires including the General Well-Being (GWB) schedule, a four-item tool that asks respondents to rate the severity of their anxiety-related symptoms during the past month. Strokes were identified through hospital or nursing home reports and death certificates. Numerous covanates were accounted for, including depressive symptoms as measured by the GWB's depressed mood subscale. …

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