Quality of Life Impairment in Anxiety Disorders

  • Margaret A. Koury
  • Mark Hyman Rapaport


There is a growing consensus that practitioners must broaden the scope of assessment for anxiety disorders from signs and symptoms to include the measurement of quality of life (QOL) appraisals and social functioning. However, there is not a consensus about the definition of quality of life nor is there agreement about how to operationalize the construct of quality of life. Most measures of QOL assess an individual’s perceptions about social relationships, physical health, work and activity functioning, economic status, and an overall sense of well-being. Objective functional impairment can be quantified by measuring work productivity, mental health functioning, and physical health functioning. One of the challenges faced by the field is understanding the relationship between objective measures of functioning and subjective measures of QOL. In this chapter, we will present findings from epidemiologic studies and empirical research investigations on QOL and functional impairment in generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder, and generalized social phobia. We will discuss the findings, address strengths and weakness of the current research, and suggest future areas of focus to expand our knowledge and competencies including appropriating data from clinical populations in order to better understand and treat this growing population

Key words

Quality of life Functional impairment Anxiety disorders Generalized anxiety disorder Panic disorder Posttraumatic stress disorder Social phobia 


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Copyright information

© springer 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Margaret A. Koury
    • 1
  • Mark Hyman Rapaport
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychiatryCedars-Sinai Medical Center 8730 Alden DriveC-301 Los Angeles

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