Panic disorder and incident coronary heart disease: a systematic review and meta-analysis protocol

Phillip J. Tully, Gary A. Wittert, Deborah A. Turnbull, John F. Beltrame, John D. Horowitz, Suzanne Cosh, Harald Baumeister

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Background: The clinical presentation of panic disorder and panic attack overlaps many symptoms typically experienced in coronary heart disease (CHD). Etiological links between panic disorder and CHD are controversial and remain largely tenuous. This systematic review aims to pool together data regarding panic disorder with respect to incident CHD or myocardial infarction. Methods/Design: Electronic databases (MEDLINE, EMBASE, PsycINFO and SCOPUS) will be searched using a search strategy exploding the topics for CHD and panic disorder. Authors and reference lists of included studies will also be contacted to identify additional published and unpublished studies. Eligibility criteria are as follows: Population: persons without CHD who meet criteria for panic disorder, panic attack, anxiety neurosis or elevated panic disorder symptoms; Comparison: persons without CHD who do not meet criteria for panic disorder, panic attack, anxiety neurosis or elevated panic disorder symptoms; Outcome: verified fatal and non-fatal CHD at follow-up; including coronary revascularization procedure, coronary artery disease, and myocardial infarction. Studies adopting self-report CHD will be ineligible. Screening will be undertaken by two independent reviewers with disagreements resolved through discussion. Data extraction will include original data specified as hazard ratios, risk ratios, and original cell data if available. Risk of bias assessment will be undertaken by two independent reviewers. Meta-analytic methods will be used to synthesize the data collected relating to the CHD outcomes with Cochrane Review Manager 5.3. Discussion: This systematic review aims to clarify whether panic disorder is associated with elevated risk for subsequent CHD. An evaluation of the etiological links between panic disorder with incident CHD might inform evidence-based clinical practice and policy concerning triaging chest pain patients, diagnostic assessment, and psychiatric intervention with panic disorder patients. Systematic review registration:PROSPERO CRD42014014891 .

Original languageEnglish
Article number33
JournalSystematic reviews
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished or Issued - 25 Mar 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Anxiety disorder
  • Anxiety neurosis
  • Coronary heart disease
  • Etiology
  • Meta-analysis
  • Myocardial infarction
  • Panic attack
  • Panic disorder
  • Protocol
  • Systematic review

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)

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