Two-year course of generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety disorder, and panic disorder with agoraphobia in a sample of latino adults

Andri S. Bjornsson*, Nicholas J. Sibrava, Courtney Beard, Ethan Moitra, Risa B. Weisberg, Carlos I.Pérez Benítez, Martin B. Keller

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: It is imperative to study the clinical course of anxiety disorders among Latinos, given the implications for culturally sensitive treatment in this population. The current study is the first prospective, observational, longitudinal study of anxiety disorders among Latinos. Method: Data are reported on 139 adult Latinos (M age = 34.65 years, SD = 10.98, 70.5% female) diagnosed with social anxiety disorder (SAD; n = 86), generalized anxiety disorder (GAD; n = 90), or panic disorder with agoraphobia (PDA; n = 62). The participants were interviewed with standardized clinical interviews at intake and annually over 2 years of follow-up. Probabilities of recovery were calculated using standard survival analysis methods. Results: The 2-year recovery rates in this study were 0.07 for SAD, 0.14 for GAD, 0.03 for PDA, and 0.50 for major depressive disorder (MDD). Overall functioning, social adjustment, and life satisfaction in this sample were poor. Conclusions: The recovery rates for anxiety disorders in this Latino sample were markedly low. Although caution must be used in comparing these data with prior longitudinal studies, these recovery rates seem to be much lower than in non-Latino White samples. However, the clinical course of MDD in this sample was similar to its course among non-Latino Whites, invoking the pressing question of whether there is something about the experience of anxiety disorders (but not MDD) among Latinos that makes them more impairing and persistent. The answer to that question should inform future treatment development for this population.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1186-1192
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 American Psychological Association.

Other keywords

  • Generalized anxiety disorder
  • Latinos
  • Longitudinal course
  • Panic disorder
  • Social anxiety disorder


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