Attentional biases to threat exist in panic disorder (PD), probably related to altered subliminal processing. We systematically reviewed studies investigating subliminal processing in PD. Studies were retrieved from MEDLINE and Scopus®. We meta-analytically compared PD (n = 167) and healthy controls (HC, n = 165) for processing of masked panic-related and neutral words. We also compared subliminal and supraliminal presentations of panic-related words relative to neutral words within PD subjects and HC. We found a significantly enhanced Stroop interference to masked panic-related words in PD vs HC (Hedges’ g = 0.60, p = 0.03; Q = 14.83, I2 = 66.3 %, p = 0.01). While both PD subjects and HC tended to be slower to respond to supraliminal threat words than to neutral words, PD subjects only showed a marginally significant slower response to subliminal panic-related words vs neutral words. Findings remain inconclusive regarding comparison to other mental disorders, neural correlates, and the effect of psychotherapy. Even if possibly flawed by methodological weaknesses, our findings support the existence of a sensitivity to subliminal threat cues in PD, which could be targeted to improve treatment.

Unconscious processing of subliminal stimuli in panic disorder: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Frumento S.;Cesari V.;Gemignani A.;Menicucci D.;Rutigliano G.
2021-01-01

Abstract

Attentional biases to threat exist in panic disorder (PD), probably related to altered subliminal processing. We systematically reviewed studies investigating subliminal processing in PD. Studies were retrieved from MEDLINE and Scopus®. We meta-analytically compared PD (n = 167) and healthy controls (HC, n = 165) for processing of masked panic-related and neutral words. We also compared subliminal and supraliminal presentations of panic-related words relative to neutral words within PD subjects and HC. We found a significantly enhanced Stroop interference to masked panic-related words in PD vs HC (Hedges’ g = 0.60, p = 0.03; Q = 14.83, I2 = 66.3 %, p = 0.01). While both PD subjects and HC tended to be slower to respond to supraliminal threat words than to neutral words, PD subjects only showed a marginally significant slower response to subliminal panic-related words vs neutral words. Findings remain inconclusive regarding comparison to other mental disorders, neural correlates, and the effect of psychotherapy. Even if possibly flawed by methodological weaknesses, our findings support the existence of a sensitivity to subliminal threat cues in PD, which could be targeted to improve treatment.
2021
Baroni, M.; Frumento, S.; Cesari, V.; Gemignani, A.; Menicucci, D.; Rutigliano, G.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11568/1141129
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