Homotypic Versus Heterotypic Continuity of Anxiety Symptoms in Young Adolescents: Evidence for Distinctions Between DSM-IV Subtypes
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In the original publication homotypic and heterotypic continuity of anxiety symptoms were assessed in young adolescents from the general population across a 2-year interval. Variances reflecting homotypic and heterotypic continuity were calculated with regression analyses. In the publication, the correct variances are presented in the tables, but the discussion was based partly on incorrect variances. While writing the paper, results of Table 4 were misread. As a result, variances reflecting main sex effects (Table 4 row 3), that are in the line below variances that reflect homotypic continuity (Table 4 row 2), were erroneously regarded as variances for homotypic continuity. This suggested that homotypic continuity was relatively high for symptoms of separation anxiety (SAD), generalized anxiety (GAD), and social phobia (SoPh), and for panic symptoms (PD) in girls.
In fact, variances reflecting homotypic continuity were 5.0% for SAD, 2.3% for GAD, 6.9% for SoPh, 3.7% for PD, and 2.5% for OCD (Table 4 row 2). For PD, a marked interaction with sex was found, resulting in variances reflecting homotypic continuity of 6.0% in girls and 2.0% in boys. Variances reflecting heterotypic continuity were 2.0% for SAD, 4.2% for GAD, 1.3% for SoPh, 2.3% for PD, and 2.7% for OCD.
Thus, the proper conclusion would be that homotypic continuity was relatively high for SAD and SoPh, and for PD in girls, whereas homotypic continuity was relatively low for GAD. For OCD, homotypic and heterotypic continuity were almost equal.
The findings indicated that symptoms of SAD, SoPh, and PD may occur fairly independently, whereas GAD symptoms tend to occur in conjunction with other types of anxiety. Hence, SAD, SoPh, and PD may deserve a role as separate anxiety constructs, whereas GAD may be associated considerably with other types of anxiety.
The results section of the abstract should contain the following text: “Regression analyses indicated that homotypic continuity was relatively high for SAD, SoPh, and PD (for PD especially in girls), and relatively low for GAD.”
The conclusions section of the abstract should contain the following text: “In many studies, anxiety disorders are treated as one group of disorders, and some widely used assessment instruments do not even contain scales that tap different anxiety dimensions. In the present study, evidence for homotypic continuity was found for symptoms of separation anxiety and social anxiety, and for panic symptoms in girls, underscoring the usefulness of making distinctions between these different anxiety constructs.”