• Jerrold F. Rosenbaum
  • Alan J. Gelenberg


Anxiety is a universal human response to routine stress and emotional conflict that is experienced both psychologically and physiologically. It is important to distinguish “normal” anxiety from “pathological” anxiety or anxiety disorder. Pathological anxiety may be distinguished from normal by its autonomy, intensity, duration, or associated behavior. When “autonomous,” anxiety appears to have a “life of its own,” with minimal basis in identifiable environmental stimuli. The “intensity” of symptomatic distress for pathological anxiety frequently exceeds the patient’s capacity to bear the discomfort; the experience, therefore, is unlikely to engender a healthy, adaptive response. When symptoms recur or persist over time, the duration of anxious suffering will typically indicate pathology. Finally, pathological anxiety may trigger such stereotyped behavioral responses as avoidance or lifestyle constriction .


Anxiety Disorder Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Anxiety Symptom Generalize Anxiety Disorder Social Phobia 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jerrold F. Rosenbaum
    • 1
    • 2
  • Alan J. Gelenberg
    • 3
  1. 1.Clinical Psychopharmacology UnitMassachusetts General HospitalBostonUSA
  2. 2.Department of PsychiatryHarvard Medical SchoolBostonUSA
  3. 3.Department of PsychiatryUniversity of Arizona Health Sciences CenterTucsonUSA

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