Health  Vol.5 No.2 A , February 2013
Asthma history predicts the risk of affective disorders and anxiety disorders

Background: Positive associations between asthma and a range of mental disorders have been increasingly reported in cross-sectional studies. It is important to determine whether the association between asthma and mental disorders may be causal. Objectives: We conducted a retrospective cohort study using data collected from the 2007 Australia Mental Health and Wellbeing survey (MHW) to examine whether preexisting asthma may predict the likelihood of various types of anxiety disorders and affective disorders. Design, Settings and Subjects: The 2007 MHW survey was a nationally representative household survey. Its data included 8841 Australian adults aged 18 - 85 yrs. Age at first onset of asthma and mental disorders were used to reveal the order of occurrence of asthma and mental disorders, and to define time at risk and asthma exposure. Kaplan-Meier failure function and multivariate Poisson regression models were employed in analysis. Results: Participants who had a history of asthma that lasted six months or more were at higher risk of panic disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder, bipolar disorder, mania and hypomania. The association between asthma history and risk of mental disorder subtypes differed by gender. Conclusion: The findings of this study support the hypothesis that pre-existing asthma increases the risk of a number of anxiety disorders and affective disorders. Predisposition to carbon dioxide hypersensitivity and corticosteroid therapy may partly explain the observed associations.

Cite this paper: Liang, W. and Chikritzhs, T. (2013) Asthma history predicts the risk of affective disorders and anxiety disorders. Health, 5, 313-319. doi: 10.4236/health.2013.52A042.

[1]   Eder, W., Ege, M.J. and von Mutius, E. (2006) Current concepts: The asthma epidemic. New England Journal of Medicine, 355, 2226-2235. doi:10.1056/NEJMra054308

[2]   Russell, G. (2006) The childhood asthma epidemic. Thorax, 61, 276-278. doi:10.1136/thx.2005.052662

[3]   Chun, T.H., Weitzen, S.H. and Fritz, G.K. (2008) The asthma/mental health nexus in a population-based sample of the United States. Chest, 134, 1176-1182. doi:10.1378/chest.08-1528

[4]   Goldney, R.D., Ruffin, R., Fisher, L.J. and Wilson, D.H. (2003) Asthma symptoms associated with depression and lower quality of life: A population survey. Medical Jour- nal of Australia, 178, 437-441.

[5]   Goodwin, R.D., Faravelli, C., Rosi, S., Cosci, F., Truglia, E., de Graaf, R., et al. (2005) The epidemiology of panic disorder and agoraphobia in Europe. European Neuro- psychopharmacology, 15, 435-443. doi:10.1016/j.euroneuro.2005.04.006

[6]   Lavoie, K.L., Cartier, A., Labrecque, M., Bacon, S.L., Lemière, C., Malo, J.-L., et al. (2005) Are psychiatric disorders associated with worse asthma control and qual- ity of life in asthma patients? Respiratory Medicine, 99, 1249-1257. doi:10.1016/j.rmed.2005.03.003

[7]   Goodwin, R.D., Chuang, S., Simuro, N., Davies, M. and Pine, D.S. (2007) Association between lung function and mental health problems among adults in the United States: Findings from the first national health and nutrition ex- amination survey. American Journal of Epidemiology, 165, 383-388. doi:10.1093/aje/kwk026

[8]   Scott, K.M., Von Korff, M., Or-mel, J., Zhang, M.-Y., Bruffaerts, R., Alonso, J., et al. (2007) Mental disorders among adults with asthma: Results from the World Mental Health Survey. General Hospital Psychiatry, 29, 123-133. doi:10.1016/j.genhosppsych.2006.12.006

[9]   Katon, W., Lozano, P., Russo, J., McCauley, E., Richardson, L. and Bush, T. (2007) The prevalence of DSM-IV anxiety and de-pressive disorders in youth with asthma compared with controls. Journal of Adolescent Health, 41, 455-463. doi:10.1016/j.jadohealth.2007.05.023

[10]   Goodwin, R.D., Jacobi, F. and Thefeld, W. (2003) Mental Disorders and Asthma in the Community. Archives of General Psychiatry, 60, 1125-1130. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.60.11.1125

[11]   Hasler, G., Gergen, P.J., Kleinbaum, D.G., Ajdacic, V., Gamma, A., Eich, D. et al. (2005) Asthma and Panic in young adults: A 20-year prospective community study. American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, 171, 1224-1230. doi:10.1164/rccm.200412-1669OC

[12]   Sanderson, W.C. and Wetzler, S. (1990) Five percent carbon dioxide challenge: Valid analogue and marker of panic disorder? Biological Psychiatry, 27, 689-701. doi:10.1016/0006-3223(90)90584-O

[13]   Battaglia, M., Pesenti-Gritti, P., Medland, S.E., Ogliari, A., Tambs, K. and Spa-tola, C.A.M. (2009) A genetically informed study of the association between childhood separation anxiety, sensitivity to CO2, panic disorder, and the effect of childhood parental loss. Archives of General Psychiatry, 66, 64-71. doi:10.1001/archgenpsychiatry.2008.513

[14]   Papp, L.A., Martinez, J.M., Klein, D.F., Coplan, J.D., Norman, R.G., Cole, R., et al. (1997) Respiratory Psychophysiology of panic disorder: Three respiratory challenges in 98 subjects. American Journal of Psychiatry, 154, 1557-1565.

[15]   Brown, E.S., Khan, D.A. and Nejtek, V.A. (1999) The psychiatric side effects of corticosteroids. Annals of Al- lergy, Asthma & Immunology, 83, 495-500, 503-504. doi:10.1016/S1081-1206(10)62858-X

[16]   Sirois, F. (2003) Steroid psychosis: A review. General Hospital Psychiatry, 25, 27-33. doi:10.1016/S0163-8343(02)00241-4

[17]   Slade, T., Johnston, A., Oakley Browne, M.A., Andrews, G. and Whiteford, H. (2009) 2007 National survey of mental health and wellbeing: Methods and key findings. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 43, 594-605. doi:10.1080/00048670902970882

[18]   ABS (2007) National Survey of mental health and well- being: Summary of results. Australian Bureau of Statistics, Canberra.

[19]   Kessler, R.C., Crum, R.M., Warner, L.A., Nelson, C.B., Schulenberg, J. and Anthony, J.C. (1997) Lifetime co-occurrence of DSM-III-R alcohol abuse and depend- ence with other psychiatric disorders in the national comorbidity survey. Archives of General Psychiatry, 54, 313-321. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1997.01830160031005

[20]   Papp, L.A., Klein, D.F. and Gorman, J.M. (1993) Carbon-dioxide hypersensitivity, hyperventilation, and panic disorder. American Journal of Psychiatry, 150, 1149- 1157.

[21]   Roberson-Nay, R., Klein, D.F., Klein, R.G., Mannuzza, S., Moulton, J.L., Guardino, M., et al. (2010) Carbon dioxide hypersensitivity in separation-anxious offspring of parents with panic disorder. Biological Psychiatry, 67, 1171- 1177.

[22]   Kips, J.C. and Pauwels, R.A. (2001) Low dose inhaled corticosteroids and the prevention of death from asthma. Thorax, 56, 74-78. doi:10.1016/j.biopsych.2009.12.014

[23]   Wada, K., Yamada, N., Sato, T., Suzuki, H., Miki, M., Lee, Y., et al. (2001) Corticosteroid-induced psychotic and mood disorders: Diagnosis defined by DSM-IV and clinical pictures. Psychosomatics, 42, 461-466. doi:10.1176/appi.psy.42.6.461

[24]   Brown, E.S. and Suppes, T. (1998) Mood symptoms during corticosteroid therapy: A review. Harvard Review of Psychiatry, 5, 239-246. doi:10.3109/10673229809000307

[25]   Warrington, T.P. and Bostwick, J.M. (2006) Psychiatric adverse effects of corticosteroids. Mayo Clinic Proceedings, 81, 1361-1367. doi:10.4065/81.10.1361

[26]   Kessler, R.C., Angermeyer, M., Anthony, J.C., R, D.E.G., Demyttenaere, K., Gasquet, I., et al. (2007) Lifetime prevalence and age-of-onset distributions of mental disorders in the World Health Organization’s world mental health survey initiative. World Psychiatry, 6, 168-176.