The purpose of this trial is to study how teens with and without an anxiety disorder make
This is a brain imaging study using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in
adolescents between the ages of 13 and 17.
Preliminary analyses of behavioral data showed no group differences in response times during
the decision-making games. However, behavioral ratings of certainty during the task showed
differences between groups. Anxiety-disordered participants indicated lower levels of
certainty during the most uncertain conditions of the task (p < .05). This difference was
consistent with the study hypothesis. Within-subjects analyses of the decision-making tasks
showed that subjects responded as expected. Reaction times (RT) during uncertain conditions
of the HiLo-Game were significantly longer than during more certain conditions (p = .001).
Diary Task RTs for rating ambiguous situations were significantly longer than ratings of
unambiguous situations (p = .019). Preliminary Analyses showed a significant correlation
between Intolerance of Uncertainty (IU) and RT during the Marble Task (r = -0.54, p < .05).
Preliminary analysis also showed significant correlation between ratings of level of anxiety
during the diary task and IU, IS, MASC and the child version of the SCARED. These
preliminary results were not submitted for publication.
- Must meet diagnostic criteria for Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Separation Anxiety
Disorder or Social Phobia, OR must be free of medical, psychiatric, neurologic
conditions and learning disorders (healthy controls)
- Sufficient intelligence to understand the study and provide truly informed consent;
will be determined by educational history
- Having any major medical conditions that may interfere with interpretation of results
or be associated with risk in an MRI environment (history of metal implants, or
contraindications to MRI scanning for research purposes, including pregnancy)
- Current evidence of Autism, Major Depression, Substance Abuse, Obsessive Compulsive
Disorder, Post-traumatic Stress Disorder, Panic Disorder, Tic Disorders, significant
suicidality, lifetime history of psychosis or mania.
- Estimated Full-Scale IQ below 80
- Inability or unwillingness to remain still during scanning
- Inability or unwillingness to provide assent
- Absence of signed consent by parent or legal guardian
- Current history of sexual or physical abuse in the family, or past sexual or physical
abuse if there is ongoing Department of Social Services (DSS) involvement