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August 1949

THE PHOBIC SYNDROME: A Study of Eighty-Six Patients with Phobic Reactions

Author Affiliations

Medical Director, Silver Hill Foundation for the Treatment of the Psychoneuroses; Associate Professor of Psychiatry, Yale School of Medicine NEW CANAAN, CONN.

Arch NeurPsych. 1949;62(2):162-172. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1949.02310140039003

A STATISTICAL study of my records reveals that in the course of treating 3,100 psychoneurotic patients, 86 with a severe phobic syndrome have been encountered. The incidence of patients with phobia in my practice is approximately 2.5 per cent of all psychoneurotic persons. The phobic syndrome occurred twice as often in women as in men. The majority of those seeking treatment were under 40 years of age; 2 were under 20, and there were a few with the chronic phobic syndrome between 40 and 50 years of age. Roughly, 75 per cent of these phobic patients had one or more seriously neurotic parents; in some instances the parents were phobic. The number of siblings and the patient's position in the family constellation appeared to play no part in the picture, and over half of them had three or more siblings. Very few were emotionally close to any sibling, indicating that

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