Panic disorder in children and adolescents

G. Masi, L. Favilla, R. Romano

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Panic disorder (PD) is a well-known and frequently described psychiatric disorder in adults, that can cause clinically significant distress and impairment of social and occupational functioning. It is characterized by a discrete period of intense fear and discomfort, that develops abruptly and reaches a peak in 10 minutes or less, with other somatic and cognitive symptoms. PD in prepubertal children and early adolescents in rarely reported, but 18% of adult patients with PD indicate onset of PA before 10 years of age. Probably many of the prepubertal cases are being misdiagnosed, and/or they can have a different clinical expression from adults. The lack of identification of these affected subjects can have serious consequences on social and academic development. The aim of this paper is to review clinical literature describing PD in children and adolescents. Prevalence, specificity of clinical features, comorbidity, instruments for diagnosis are described. Directions in pharmacological, psychotherapeutic and educational management of PD in children and adolescents are suggested.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)153-156
Number of pages4
JournalPanminerva Medica
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1999


  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Panic disorders

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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    Masi, G., Favilla, L., & Romano, R. (1999). Panic disorder in children and adolescents. Panminerva Medica, 41(2), 153-156.