The ASAP Dictionary of Anxiety and Panic Disorders
E

E - see epinephrine.

Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) - regarding ear, nose and throat health. ENT doctors can diagnose conditions such as inner ear infection, sinusitis, tinnitus.

EBV - see Epstein Barr virus.

ECG - see electrocardiogram.

ECT - see electroconvulsive therapy.

EEG - see electroencephalogram.

Effort Syndrome - an alternate name for post traumatic stress disorder or panic disorder dating back to WWI.

EKG - see electrocardiogram.

Electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG) - a medical device for monitoring the electrical rhythms of the heart. See cardiac disorder.

Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) - a therapy where electrodes are placed on or near a patient's ears to pass high level electricity through the brain; producing convulsions with therapeutic effect. ECT is often used for extreme depression. Typically, patients do not remember their ECT sessions and the main side effect is temporary loss of short term memory. ECT should not be confused with Cranial Electrotherapy Stimulation (CES) which uses low level electricity and does not act via therapeutic convulsions. Also see Vagus Nerve Stimulator.

Electroencephalogram (EEG) - a medical device for monitoring the electrical rhythms of the brain. Often used to rule out seizures in panic disorder cases.

EMDR - see Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing.

Emetic - any agent that causes vomiting.

Emetophobia - a phobia of vomiting.

Emotion - any psychological and/or neurological state characterized by somatic sensations, as well as cognitive and behavioral tendencies. Also see mood.

Empathy - ability to emotionally relate to another individual's emotional state.

Endocrine System - the system of endocrine glands (adrenal, pituitary, thyroid, etc.) which produce hormones and pheromones.

Endocrinologist - a medical doctor who specializes in endocrinology.

Endocrinology - the study of the endocrine system, and related responses of other tissues and organs.

Endogenous Anxiety - anxiety that is the product of an individual's internal stress. Typically the result of an anxiety disorder, perhaps involving a hormone or neurotransmitter dysfunction. Contrast with exogenous anxiety.

Endorphins - a family of neurotransmitters (neuropeptides) involved in the muting of pain. Endorphin levels appear to be directly related to dopamine levels.

ENT - see Ear, Nose and Throat.

Entomophobia - a phobia of insects.

Enyo - a god from Greek mythology who personified horror, especially regarding conflict. A female relative of Ares (Mars), but not clear if she was his daughter or sister. Roman, Bellona. The word 'belligerent' is derived from 'Bellona'. Also see mythology.

Epidemiology - factors regarding the distribution of a disease or disorder within a population.

Epilepsy - excessive electrical activity in the brain which results in a seizure or convulsion. Adj. Epileptic. The etiology of epilepsy and anxiety disorders may overlap to some degree. Anticonvulsant medications are used in the treatment of both seizures and panic attacks. Epilepsy, proper, can be diagnosed by EEG and is typically ruled out during the diagnosis of anxiety disorders.

Epinephrine (E) - a hormone and neurotransmitter (a catecholamine) produced by the adrenal gland. Abnormally high levels of E can cause anxiety or panic attacks (e.g. pheochromocytoma). For biosynthesis details see tyrosine. Some anesthetics contain E which may aggravate anxiety, so discuss any concerns with your doctor or dentist before a medical procedure.

Epstein Barr Virus (EBV) - a virus which produces symptoms similar to Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS). Though EBV and CFS were once considered synonymous, they are now considered different conditions. EBV can be diagnosed with a blood test.

Erinys - the Erinys were a group of Greek spirits that punished guilt with fear. They originally sprang from the spilled blood of Uranus. Appearing as women with hair of snakes (but not Gorgons) their names were Alekto (the unresting), Megaera (the jealous) and Tisiphone (the avenger). Roman, the Furiaes (Furies). Also see mythology.

ERP - see Exposure and Response Prevention.

Etiology - the overall causes of a disorder or disease. Contrast with pathology. Etiology focuses on various 'causes' of a disorder, pathology focuses on various 'characteristics' of a disorder.

Exercise - exertion of the body or mind. Physical exercise is typically considered to reduce anxiety through either exposure to symptoms, release of endorphins or, following exercise, by promoting improved relaxation and sleep. Similarly, mental exercise can be stimulating or, via distraction, relaxing. However, not everyone responds the same to exercise, so moderation and an appropriate degree of clinical guidance are recommended.

Exhausted Heart - a dated alternate name for post traumatic stress disorder or panic disorder. Also see cardiac neurosis.

Exogenous Anxiety - anxiety due to an individual's external stress. Typically, such anxiety is a healthy and normal reaction to one's environment. However, when such anxiety is excessive it may be due to an anxiety disorder. Contrast with endogenous anxiety.

Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP) - a form of exposure therapy.

Exposure Therapy - any behavioral therapy or cognitive behavioral therapy designed to overcome anxiety through exposure to the cause of anxiety. Exposure is usually, but not always, gradual. Also see exposure and response prevention, eye movement desensitization and reprocessing, flooding, interoceptive technique, traumatic incident reduction, virtual reality exposure.

Extinction - a process where neurons in the cerebral cortex learn new memories to compete with conditioned fear responses of the amygdala.

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) - a form of psychotherapy that uses rapid eye movement to help recondition an anxiety response.

The ASAP Dictionary of Anxiety and Panic Disorders