ERIC Number: EJ796989
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Jun
Reference Count: 0
Can the Components of a Cognitive Model Predict the Severity of Generalized Anxiety Disorder?
Dugas, Michel J.; Savard, Pierre; Gaudet, Adrienne; Turcotte, Julie; Laugesen, Nina; Robichaud, Melisa; Francis, Kylie; Koerner, Naomi
Behavior Therapy, v38 n2 p169-178 Jun 2007
Over the past decade, a number of well-controlled studies have supported the validity of a cognitive model of generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) that has four main components: intolerance of uncertainty, positive beliefs about worry, negative problem orientation, and cognitive avoidance. Although these studies have shown that the model components are associated with high levels of worry in nonclinical samples and with a diagnosis of GAD in clinical samples, they have not addressed the question of whether the model components can predict the severity of GAD. Accordingly, the present study sought to determine if the model components are related to diagnostic severity, worry severity, and somatic symptom severity in a sample of 84 patients with a primary diagnosis of GAD. All model components were related to GAD severity, although positive beliefs about worry and cognitive avoidance were only modestly associated with the severity of the disorder. Intolerance of uncertainty and negative problem orientation had more robust relationships with the severity of GAD (and with worry severity, in particular). When participants were divided into Mild, Moderate, and Severe GAD groups, intolerance of uncertainty and negative problem orientation distinguished the Moderate and Severe GAD groups from the Mild GAD group, even when age, gender, and depressive symptoms were statistically controlled. Overall, the results lend further support to the validity of the model and suggest that intolerance of uncertainty and negative problem orientation are related to the severity of GAD, independently of sociodemographic and associated clinical factors. The theoretical and clinical implications of the findings are discussed.
Descriptors: Validity, Severity (of Disability), Depression (Psychology), Anxiety, Negative Attitudes, Cognitive Processes, Symptoms (Individual Disorders), Age Differences, Gender Differences, Models
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
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