Experimental evidence suggests that panic disorder is characterized by abnormalities in the balance system function and that these abnormalities might be related to the severity of agoraphobic avoidance. Since the balance system can be modulated by the serotonergic system, we investigated the effect of a 6-week treatment with citalopram on the balance system function in patients with panic disorder. Fifteen patients with panic disorder with/without agoraphobia underwent static posturography on days 0 and 42. Static posturography and clinical assessments were carried out by different investigators who were blind to each other. Static posturography showed high percentages of abnormal scores. Patients with no or low agoraphobic avoidance showed less abnormal posturographic measures than those with moderate to severe agoraphobia. After 6 weeks of treatment with citalopram there was a significant decrease of four out of six posturography measures in eyes-closed and neck extension conditions, whereas no significant effect was found in the eyes-open condition. This is the first report that suggests that the modulation of the serotonergic system can improve the balance system function in patients with panic disorder, particularly when visual information is lacking. In addition, our findings confirm the observation that many patients with panic disorder have abnormalities in their balance system function, supporting the idea that these abnormalities are mainly related to agoraphobic avoidance. (C) 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

Serotonergic modulation of the balance system in panic disorder: An open study

BELLODI , LAURA
2003

Abstract

Experimental evidence suggests that panic disorder is characterized by abnormalities in the balance system function and that these abnormalities might be related to the severity of agoraphobic avoidance. Since the balance system can be modulated by the serotonergic system, we investigated the effect of a 6-week treatment with citalopram on the balance system function in patients with panic disorder. Fifteen patients with panic disorder with/without agoraphobia underwent static posturography on days 0 and 42. Static posturography and clinical assessments were carried out by different investigators who were blind to each other. Static posturography showed high percentages of abnormal scores. Patients with no or low agoraphobic avoidance showed less abnormal posturographic measures than those with moderate to severe agoraphobia. After 6 weeks of treatment with citalopram there was a significant decrease of four out of six posturography measures in eyes-closed and neck extension conditions, whereas no significant effect was found in the eyes-open condition. This is the first report that suggests that the modulation of the serotonergic system can improve the balance system function in patients with panic disorder, particularly when visual information is lacking. In addition, our findings confirm the observation that many patients with panic disorder have abnormalities in their balance system function, supporting the idea that these abnormalities are mainly related to agoraphobic avoidance. (C) 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11768/4616
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