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Article
April 1993

A Direct Interview Family Study of Social Phobia

Author Affiliations

From the Anxiety Disorders Clinic, Department of Therapeutics, New York State Psychiatric Institute (Drs Fyer, Mannuzza, Liebowitz, and Klein and Mr Chapman) and the Department of Psychiatry, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons (Drs Fyer, Mannuzza, Klein, and Liebowitz), New York, NY.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1993;50(4):286-293. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1993.01820160056007
Abstract

• Risks for DSM-III-R anxiety and affective disorders and "subdisorder" (nonimpairing) irrational social fears, among directly interviewed first-degree relatives (n=83) of probands who met criteria for social phobia but for no other lifetime anxiety disorder diagnosis, were contrasted to risks for disorder among similarly evaluated relatives (n=231) of never mentally ill controls. Relatives of social phobia probands had a significantly increased risk for social phobia (16% vs 5%, relative risk=3.12) but not for other anxiety disorders. These results suggest a familial contribution to the development of some cases of social phobia. The specificity of the pattern of intergenerational transmission is consistent with the current nosologic distinction between social phobia and other anxiety disorders.

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