Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology

, Volume 39, Issue 5, pp 721–733 | Cite as

A Meta-analytic Review of the Role of Child Anxiety Sensitivity in Child Anxiety

  • Valerie A. Noël
  • Sarah E. Francis


Conflicting findings exist regarding (1) whether anxiety sensitivity (AS) is a construct distinct from anxiety in children and (2) the specific nature of the role of AS in child anxiety. This study uses meta-analytic techniques to (1) determine whether youth (ages 6–18 years) have been reported to experience AS, (2) examine whether AS differentiates anxiety disordered youth from youth without diagnoses, and (3) ascertain whether AS distinguishes youth with panic disorder from those with other anxiety disorders. The weighted mean effect size analyses included 15 studies and 6,579 participants. Results suggested positive correlational relationships between AS and anxiety for children (r = 0.26) and adolescents (r = 0.36) and higher levels of AS for anxiety disordered youth than non-clinical youth (d = 0.64). Findings tentatively suggested higher levels of AS for youth with panic disorder than youth diagnosed with other anxiety disorders. Implications and future directions in the research of child AS are discussed.


Anxiety sensitivity Children Adolescents Anxiety Panic disorder 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyMemorial University of NewfoundlandSt. John’sCanada

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