Panic attacks are psychopathological phenomena with a strong emotional activation that often induces subsequent anticipatory anxiety and phobic avoidance. Impairment in emotional processing in patients with Panic Disorder (PD) has been hypothesized. Emotional Intelligence (EI) involves the individual abilities to perceive, understand and manage emotions in order to cope with changes in internal and external environment. We examined EI in 42 patients with PD with Agoraphobia compared to 49 healthy controls and investigated if clinical severity of Agoraphobia is related to EI performance. We assessed EI by Mayer-Salovey-Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test and Agoraphobia by Mobility Inventory for Agoraphobia. Patients with PD and Agoraphobia showed lower Strategic EI ability than healthy controls, in both Understanding and Managing emotion abilities, and a general propensity to attribute negative emotional valence to different stimuli. These preliminary results suggest that impaired mechanisms of understanding and integrating emotions may be involved in the phenomenology of PD. These features might be the target of psychological interventions in PD. On the contrary, Emotional Intelligence did not appear to affect the clinical severity of Agoraphobia.
|Translated title of the contribution||Emotional intelligence in panic disorder|
|Number of pages||6|
|Journal||Rivista di Psichiatria|
|Publication status||Published - Sep 2010|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Psychiatry and Mental health