A prospective follow-along study of the course of social phobia

Psychiatry Research
J ReichM B Keller


The goals of this study were to delineate the courses of social phobia and to determine whether the course of generalized and specific social phobia differed. In the Harvard/Brown Longitudinal Study of Anxiety Research Project, 66 specific and 74 generalized social phobic subjects were identified for whom adequate course data were available. These subjects had been followed prospectively with a standardized follow-along measure of psychopathology. The probability of remission was calculated for each individual group and both groups combined. Demographics were the same for both groups except that the specific social phobia group had a marginally higher mean score on the Global Assessment Scale. Complete remission for the combined group was not different from that for either subgroup and was 0.11 at 65 weeks. Social phobia appears to be a disorder with considerable long-term morbidity. Surprisingly, both subtypes took a comparably long time to remit and were similar in their high level of psychosocial dysfunction.


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