Friday, March 11, 2016

Panic Attack

I know anxiety. I know panic attacks. Yet I realize as I ask people in detail about a panic 'attack' or an anxiety 'attack' they have a different idea of what medicine means.  Life is an anxiety attack is poetic justice but not clinically relevant.

The DSMV lists Panic Attack Specifiers. Panic attack is not a mental disorder itself  They can occur in the context of other mental disorders, (e.g. depression, ptsd, substance abuse) and some medical disorders (cardiac, respiratory, vestibular, gastrointestinal).

Panic attack is distinguished by an abrupt surge of intense fear or discomfort and reach a peak within minutes, during which time four or more of the following symptoms are experienced:
1. Palpitations, pounding heart, or accelerated heart rate
2. Sweating
3. Trembling or shaking
4. Sensations of shortness of breath or smothering
5. Feelings of choking
6. Chest pain or discomfort
7. Nausea or abdominal distress
8. Feeling dizzy, instead, light-headed or faint
9. Chills or heat sensations
10 Paresthesia (numbness or tingling sensational)
11. Derealization (feeling of unreality) or depersonalization (being detailed from oneself)
12 Fear of losing control or 'going crazy'
13. Fear or dying.

If you are having you, first stop should be the emergency to make sure there's nothing physical especially if your name is Sigourney Weaver in the Aliens.

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