The Classification of Anxiety and Hysterical States. Part II. Toward a More Heuristic Classification


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Abstract

In the historical review and empirical delineation of the classification of anxiety and hysterical states (Part I), it was concluded that the existing classifications are unsatisfactory and require some re-conceptualization if they are to be useful clinically and empirically. In keeping with more recent developments in the genetic, behavioral, pharmacological, biochemical, and psychophysiological investigation of these disorders, a new classification is proposed. The two major categories of anxiety and hysterical disorders have a different clinical presentation and course, a different mean age of onset, distribution of age of onset, sex distribution, response to treatment modalities, and habituation response on galvanic skin response. Empirical evidence supporting this proposal is cited. This classification has heuristic merit in guiding research efforts and discussions and in directing clinicians to a simple and practical solution to their patients' anxiety disorders.

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