Document Type : Original Article(s)


1 Psychiatrist, Mental Health Department, Isfahan Cardiovascular Research Center.

2 MD,

3 MD


AbstractINTRODUCTION: Anxiety is associated with a higher risk of cardiovascular disease. Thepresent study aims to assess the extent of carotid artery atherosclerosis in patients with andwithout anxiety disorder.METHODS: In a cross-sectional study, two groups of participants with and without anxietydisorder (40 and 80 subjects, respectively) according to DSM-IV were selected from thePsychiatry Clinic of Noor Hospital and Mental Health Unit of Isfahan CardiovascularResearch Center by simple sampling method. Evaluation of major risk factors wasperformed after recording demographic characteristics. Zung questionnaire was used toassess severity of anxiety. Carotid ultrasonography was performed in three portions ofcarotid arteries, bilaterally, and Intima-Media Thickness (IMT) ≥8 mm was considered asatherosclerosis. Statistical analysis included t-test, χ2 and logistic regression.RESULTS: Mean age of participants with and without anxiety disorder was 49.07±12.08and 48.68±11.02 years, respectively. Major atherosclerosis risk factors did not differsignificantly between the two groups. IMT values in all portions were significantly higher inthe anxiety group. The presence of anxiety was positively associated with the presence ofatherosclerosis in all branches, except for the left common carotid artery.DISCUSSION: Anxiety increases the risk of cardiovascular disease, hence measures mustbe adopted to control anxiety with pharmacologic and nonpharmacologic interventions toreduce atherosclerosis.ASSOCIATION OF ANXIETY DISORDER AND CAROTIDATHEROSCLEROSISARYA Journal, 2005, 1(3): 170-174Keywords . Anxiety . Intima-Media thickness . Atherosclerosis