Date of Graduation
Eberly College of Arts and Sciences
Georg H. Eifert.
Predictability of panic attacks has been identified as an important factor in the development, maintenance, and treatment of panic disorder. Although animal studies typically have found a preference for signaled (predictable) over unsignaled (unpredictable) aversive events, results with human participants have been less clear. Because preference for predictability has a wide range of clinical implications, we examined human preference for predictability in a biological challenge paradigm. Further, we examined the differential effects of predictability as a function of anxiety sensitivity and gender. In general, females showed a significantly greater preference for predictability compared to males, as did high anxious participants compared to their low anxious counterparts. Specifically, high anxious females showed the greatest preference for predictability, high anxious males and low anxious females showed moderate preference for predictability, and low anxious males were indifferent. Although the results suggest the necessity of considering individual difference variables such as gender and anxiety sensitivity, support is provided for the use of prediction testing and other strategies to enhance an individual's prediction of panic attacks in the treatment of panic disorder.
Lejuez, Carl Wilbourne, "Preference between predictable and unpredictable administrations of carbon dioxide-enriched air" (1999). Graduate Theses, Dissertations, and Problem Reports. 3133.