Community Mental Health Journal

, Volume 43, Issue 4, pp 305–319 | Cite as

A Community Epidemiological Survey of Generalized Anxiety Disorder in Hong Kong

  • Sing LeeEmail author
  • Adley Tsang
  • Helena Chui
  • Kathleen Kwok
  • Emily Cheung


Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) is understudied in Asian communities. There were 3,304 Chinese subjects (aged 15–60 years) randomly drawn from the general population of Hong Kong and successfully interviewed. The participation rate was 65.8%. The six-month prevalence of DSM-IV GAD was 4.1%. Over half of the GAD subjects reported palpitations and bowel symptoms. Comorbid depressive mood (65%) and substance use (35%) were common. Forty-one percent of GAD subjects sought help, usually from general practitioners who prescribed tranquilizers after negative physical investigations. Telephone-based surveys have limitations but provide an affordable and destigmatizing alternative to face-to-face surveys for communities with limited mental health resources.


generalized anxiety disorder epidemiology help-seeking Chinese Hong Kong 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sing Lee
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Adley Tsang
    • 2
  • Helena Chui
    • 2
  • Kathleen Kwok
    • 2
  • Emily Cheung
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PsychiatryThe Chinese University of Hong KongShatin, NTHong Kong, P.R. China
  2. 2.Hong Kong Mood Disorders CenterPrince of Wales HospitalShatin, NTHong Kong, P.R. China

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