A panic attack is a sudden feeling of extreme anxiety.
Symptoms include feelings of dying or losing control of oneself, rapid
breathing (hyperventilation), and a racing heart.
A person having
a panic attack may feel dizzy, sweaty, or shaky. Other symptoms include
trouble breathing, chest pain or tightness, and an irregular
A panic attack can be triggered by a stressful event, or
it can occur unexpectedly. An attack starts suddenly and usually lasts from
5 to 20 minutes but may last even longer, up to a few hours. You have the most
anxiety about 10 minutes after the attack starts. Panic attacks can be
successfully treated with counseling and medicine.
September 7, 2012
Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine & Lisa S. Weinstock, MD - Psychiatry
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