Neural correlates of speech anticipatory anxiety in generalized social phobia

Lorberbaum J., KÖSE A. , Johnson M., Arana G., Sullivan L., Hamner M., ...More

NEUROREPORT, vol.15, no.18, pp.2701-2705, 2004 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 15 Issue: 18
  • Publication Date: 2004
  • Title of Journal : NEUROREPORT
  • Page Numbers: pp.2701-2705


Patients with generalized social phobia fear embarrassment in most social situations. Little is known about its functional neuroanatomy. We studied BOLD-fMRI brain activity while generalized social phobics and healthy controls anticipated making public speeches. With anticipation minus rest, 8 phobics compared to 6 controls showed greater subcortical, limbic, and lateral paralimbic activity (pons, striatum, amygdala/uncus/anterior parahippocampus, insula, temporal pole) - regions important in automatic emotional processing - and less cortical activity (dorsal anterior cingulate/prefrontal cortex) -regions important in cognitive processing. Phobics may become so anxious, they cannot think clearly or vice versa.