How to treat panic-attack disorder?
Q: My EEG, CT-Scan and MRI of brain was done in Nov-Dec 2001, and all reports were normal. Still, once or twice a month I get a lot of sweating, uneasiness from brain side, feeling of loosing control and falling down. I was under medication of a neurologist for 7-8 month and he told me it is Basilar Migraine but later on at Mumbai Hospital, a senior neurophysician told me that the diagnoisis was incorrect and unnecessary treatment was given to me. He felt the problem to be a Phobia/Panic attack-disorder. I left all Medication and switched over to Homeopathy and I find tremendous improvement. Do you think all reports done in Nov-Dec 2001 should be repeated again or any thing else need to be done because I feel some thing is wrong and life is normal. Besides the neurology reports, all heart related reports, audiometery and other pathology reports were also done (as both my elder brothers are doctors)and found to be normal. Do you think I should take any opinion from a neurology institute. This problem started after 26th Jan 2001 night when we experienced earthquake in Gujrat though I was away from the epicentre of earthquake i.e. 200 km. but I have experienced it.
A:Severe episodes of anxiety can occur in panic disorder as well as in some medical disorders chief among these being arrythmias [disordered heart beat], hypoglycemia [low blood sugar], thyroid disease and pheochromocytoma [both hormone disorders]. Neurological disorders have already been ruled out by investigations mentioned by you. Again, panic disorder can occur either alone or as a part of other psychiatric disorders like depression, phobia, PTSD [disorder due to severe trauma] or psychosis etc. As falling down is not a usual symptom of panic attack you need to be examined and investigated for any medical disorder. Do see a good psychiatrist or a physician who will check for these diseases as a routine during assessment of your problem. A Psychiatrist would also assess whether factors like your stress, personality, behaviour pattern are contributing. Drugs and appropriate other therapy will relieve your problem.