Saturday, September 10, 2011

Anxiety helps with Acute Coronary Syndrome recovery..Is this true?

I was reading on Australian Doctor today regarding an article titled, "Anxiety drives recovery".  It talks about a Sydney study that showed people with generalised anxiety disorder actually had a better 5-year outcome following a Acute Coronary Syndrome than people who did not have anxiety.

Does this even make sense?

I think anxiety or stress is neither good or bad.  You can use anxiety for good, or you can use it for bad.  In essence, it is a double edge sword.  Anxiety can be a very helpful motivator for people to make positive changes, but if you cannot control it, then it may backfire and manifest as an anxiety disorder.

A "healthy dose" of anxiety will probably help us to be more motivated to change our lifestyle, and implement preventative strategies.  However, if the anxiety is too overwhelming, it may create health problems.

Australian Doctor p7 Aug2011
Psychiatry Research 2011;188:383-89