Quality of life in social phobia

Steven A. Safren, Richard G. Heimberg, Elissa J. Brown, Christian Holle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

183 Scopus citations


The person's perception of his or her quality of life has been neglected in studies of mental health in general and anxiety disorders in particular. However, the judgement of the impact of a mental disorder based on symptomatic distress while ignoring one's overall quality of life is incomplete. In the present study, we examined social phobic patients'judgments of their satisfaction with various domains of life they deem important using the Quality of Life Inventory (QOLI; Frisch, unpublished). Social phobics judged their overall quality of life lower than Frisch's (unpublished) normative sample. Quality of life was inversely associated with various measures of severity of social phobia (especially social interaction anxiety), functional impairment, and depression. It was not, however, related to performance anxiety or trait anxiety. Quality of life also varied across combinations of subtype of social phobia and the presence/absence of avoidant personality disorder, and as a function of marital status. Patients showed significant improvement in quality of life scores after completion of cognitive-behavioral group therapy for social phobia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)126-133
Number of pages8
JournalDepression and anxiety
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1996
Externally publishedYes


  • avoidant personality disorder
  • cognitive-behavioral treatment
  • life satisfaction
  • quality of life
  • social phobia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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