Anxiety-Panic History
c. 1980Twin studies in the 1980s implicated genetic factors in agoraphobia and panic disorder. ... This was poaching on the classic terrain of psychogenesis: For a century, the doctrine had ruled that hysteria and the symptomatic psychoneuroses were the result of stress or dysfunctional family life. The genetic news implied that these illnesses must have a significant brain substrate, however much environmental circumstances might contribute to triggering them. (31)
c. 1980The MAOI medications developed in the 1980s.
1980By 1980 American physicians were writing 10 million prescriptions a year for antidepressants alone, the great majority of them being tricyclics. (31)
1980Alprazolam (Xanax) becomes the first benzodiazepine to prove effective in the treatment of panic disorder. (9)
1980The Phobia Society of America (later called The Anxiety Disorders Association of America) is founded to promote awareness of anxiety disorders. (17)
1980DSM-III, published in 1980. ... Indeed, on the basis of the presumed scientific underpinning of DSM-III, American psychiatry returned to the world of medicine, applying the medical model in diagnosis and downplaying the vague "biopsychosocial model" under which so much mischief had occurred. ... DSM-III listed 265 different disorders. (31)
1980The diagnostic category of panic disorder was first officially recognized with the publication of the American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (3rd edition, DSM-III). (11)
1981the effects of stimulation of the human amygdala. Such studies are performed in conjunction with brain surgery for otherwise untreatable epilepsy. Since the stimuli are delivered to the amygdala while the subjects are awake, it is possible to not only record expressive responses that are elicited, but also to ask the subjects to report on their experiences. Interestingly, the most common experience reported is a sense of foreboding danger, of fear. Fear is also the most commonly reported experience occurring in association with epileptic seizures, which are in essence spontaneous electrical stimulations that originate in the amygdala. ... Gloor, Olivier, and Quesney (1981); Halgren (1992). (42)
1982In 1982 the report of an experiment using a variant of [conditioned stimulus] carried out by Robert Ader and Nicholas Cohen stunned scientists. The two researchers experimented with a strain of mice that spontaneously developed disease because of overactivity of their immune systems. Normally, the disease is controlled by treating the mice with an immunosuppressive drug. Ader and Cohen showed that by using their conditioning techniques, they could substitute the conditioned stimulus for the actual drug - and sufficiently alter immunity in these animals to extend their life spans. Studies such as this convinced scientists that there is a strong link between the nervous system and the immune system. (41)
1983[Robert Warren discovers the bacterium (Helicobacter pylori) in 1983. Following this discovery, Barry Narshall, a colleague of Warren, challenged the assumption that stress alone caused stomach ulcers, but also required the bacterium.] (41)
1983Publication of The Anxiety Disease, by David Sheehan, MD.
1984a team at the Washington University School of Medicine used a new technology called Positron Emission Tomography (PET) scanning to get a picture of the blood flow in various regions of the brain during a lactate induced panic attack. They found an abnormal left-right blood flow asymmetry in a small region of the brain called the parahippocampal gyrus. This was the first time that a discrete brain abnormality had been identified in this anxiety disease. (25)
1984Fekete and coworkers were the first to propose explicitly the anxiogenic potential of neuronal CCK on the basis of avoidance experiments. (37)
1984Bradwejn & de Montigny (1984) suggested anxiogenic properties of [CCK] based on the electrophysiological evidence obtained while studying the activation of hippocampal neurons by microiontophoretically applied sulfated form of CCK8; this increase in firing rate of neurons was suppressed by benzodiazepines. Similar results were reported by Fekete et al. (1984) who observed increases in arousal and fear-motivated behavior in rats after they injected CCK8 in the central nucleus of amygdala.
1984Stress-induced analgesia in animals: Terman, G., Shavit, Y., Lewis, J., Cannon, J., and Liebeskind, J. 1984. "Intrinsic Mechanisms of Pain Inhibition: Activation by Stress." Science 226, 1270. (41)
c. 1985The Harvard team of ethnobotanist Wade Davis and cardiologist Regis DeSilva reviewed the subject [of voodoo death]. Davis and DeSilva object to the use of the term voodoo death, since it reeks of western condescension toward nonwestern societies. Instead, they prefer the term psychophysiological death, noting that in many cases even that term is probably a misnomer. ... Davis and Desilva suggest that these cases are simply dramatic versions of sudden cardiac death, with too much sympathetic tone driving the heart into ischemia and fibrillation. All very interesting, in that it explains why psychophysiological death might occur in individuals who already have some degree of cardiac damage. But a puzzling feature about psychophysiological death in traditional societies is that it can also occur in young people who are extremely unlikely to have any latent cardiac disease. (41)
1985various researchers showed that "glucocorticoid neurotoxicity" was not just a pharmacological effect, but was relevant to normal brain aging in the rat. Collectively, [such] studies showed that lots of glucocorticoid exposure (in the range seen during stress) or lots of stress itself would accelerate the degeneration of the aging hippocampus. ... Glucocorticoids and stress and accelerating hippocampal neuron loss: Sapolsky, R., Krey, L., and McEwen, B. 1985. "Prolonged Glucocorticoid Exposure Reduces Hippocampal Neuron Number: Implications for Aging." Journal of Neuroscience 5, 1221. (41)
1985The ability of fear to debilitate soldiers under chemical conditions cannot be overestimated. In 1985, a battalion of the French Foreign Legion was undergoing a mock chemical attack at its base in Corsica. Usually, a single aircraft would pass low over the troops and drop water vapor, simulating a gas attack. This time, however, the instructors replaced the water vapor with a harmless red powder that the troops had never seen. Once the aircraft released the powder, the seasoned troops of the legion were shaken to the core. The whole battalion, apparently believing that some horrible mistake had been made and that real chemical compounds had been used, simply came apart. Scores of soldiers writhed on the ground manifesting all the symptoms of a genuine chemical attack. (30)
1985In the summer of 1985, the National Institutes of Health convoked a "consensus development conference," bringing together experts from all over the neurosciences to determine the benefits and dangers of ECT compared with other treatments. "Not a single controlled study has shown another form of treatment to be superior to ECT in the short-term management of severe depressions," the report concluded. (31)
1986[It has been found that short-term stress, on the order of about an hour, can actually enhance the immune system. However, prolonged stress results in the classical suppression of the immune system.] ... Short-term stress stimulates immunity: Berkenbosch, F., Heijnen, C., and Croiset, G. 1986. (41)
1987Roughly ten percent of Americans use a benzodiazepine.
1987Jacques Bradwejn and colleagues discover that CCK can cause panic attacks.
1987[human psychiatric limitations have] led the military establishments of the world to begin searching for a chemical solution to the problem, a drug that will make it possible to banish fear in the soldier by controlling his brain chemistry. ... The search for such a chemical is already underway in the military research laboratories. Both the US military and the Soviets have initiated programs in the last five years to develop such a drug; the details of the American program remain classified. ... The US military has already developed at least three prototypes that show great "promise." One of these drugs may be a variant of busbirone. (30)
1987The Anxiety Disorders Association of America (ADAA) receives a grant to develop models for organizing self-help groups. (17)
1987DSM-III-R listed 292 different disorders. (31)
1987The diagnostic criteria for panic disorder were updated with the publication of the revised version of the DSM (DSM-III-R).
1988 JanThe first SRI medication, fluoxetine (Prozac), is introduced in the United States. (12, 13, 14, 29)
1988There were two conflicting studies regarding Vietnam veterans suffering PTSD symptoms. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suggested that 14.7% of veterans ever had PTSD, and only about 2.2% still had it. The National Vietnam Veterans' Readjustment Study (NVVRS) found that 30.9% of Vietnam vets suffered PTSD, with 15.2% still suffering. (49)
1988It has been shown that the CCK4-induced panic attacks can be effectively blocked by benzodiazepines (Csonka, 1988).
1988Psychotherapy is so well established in the Western world that any criticism of its value is controversial at the very least. At the present time, nearly 80 million people have sought its benefits at one time or another. Furthermore, it's difficult to describe a therapy that has at least 300 variations. Almost any activity known to man can be and probably has been labeled as "therapy." Sexual surrogate therapy, work therapy, play therapy, exercise therapy, breathing therapy, nude therapy, movie therapy, soap-opera therapy, pleasure therapy, here-and-now therapy, historical therapy, and prelife therapy are all variations on this theme. The list is virtually endless. (48)
1988Social relationships are associated with decreased mortality rates: House, J., Landis, K., and Umberson, D. 1988. "Social Relationships and Health." Science 241, 540. (41)
1989In order to explore the suspected panicogenic effects of CCK in humans, de Montigny (1989) administered IV doses of CCK4 and sulfated CCK8 varying from 20 micrograms to 100 micrograms to 10 healthy subjects. All subjects receiving CCK4 reported severe gastrointestinal distress, and seven of them experienced a panic attack of a short duration with doses between 20 and 100 micrograms. The remaining three subjects reported severe anxiety without fulfilling the panic attack criteria at doses between 80 and 100 micrograms. Two of the subjects also received either 35 or 40 micrograms of CCK8 S. Both of them complained of gastrointestinal symptoms but experienced neither pathological anxiety nor panic attacks. Even though this study was uncontrolled, preliminary, and repeatedly using the same subjects, it provided some interesting initial data regarding the panicogenic properties of CCK4 when administered to human subjects.
1989Stress and glucocorticoids damage the primate hippocampus: Uno, H., Tarara, R., Else, J., Suleman, M., and Sapolsky, R. 1989. "Hippocampal Damage Associated with Prolonged and Fatal Stress in Primates." Journal of Neuroscience 9, 1705. (41)
1989[Nocturnal] panic attacks appear to emerge from non-REM sleep, especially during the transition to early delta sleep (Mellman & Uhde, 1989b; Mellman & Uhde, 1989c). Therefore, sleep panic does not appear to be provoked by nightmares.
1989Introduction of a neuroanatomical hypothesis of panic disorder. (23)
1989The American publication known as the National Panic/Anxiety Disorder (NPAD) News is started. Publication lasts until March 1, 1998.
1989 Jul 25A Joint Resolution of the U.S. Congress designates the decade beginning January 1, 1990, as the "Decade of the Brain."
Anxiety-Panic History