Social anxiety disorder (SAD) is one of the most common psychiatric disorders and frequently co-exists with other psychiatric conditions, primarily with mood disorders. MD is the most common psychiatric comorbidity in patients with SAD, and the association of anxiety disorders and bipolar disorder with atypical depression, which is included in diagnostic guidelines for MD as a subgroup, has been well established. The present study aims to determine if SAD patients with comorbid atypical depression or bipolar disorder show differences in terms of symptomatology and disease course compared to SAD patients without bipolar disorder. We hypothesize that social phobia patients may have subgroups within themselves and the processes of these subgroups may be different from those of known SAD patients. In this study a retrospective chart review was performed for patients who had applied to the Psychiatry Outpatient Unit, Kartal Research and Training Hospital, during a 7-month period in 2018. The study had a retrospective design. A total of 82 patients diagnosed with Social Anxiety Disorder based on a SCID-I interview for DSM-IV were included in the study. Of the 82 SAD patients, 16 patients (19.5%) had also co-existing BPD. All SAD patients with comorbid BPD had at least one major depressive episode history, while 15 (93.7%) SAD patients with comorbid BPD exhibited atypical features in at least one episode. Thus, we identified an association between SAD/BPD and atypical depression and discussed the importance of this co-occurrence in terms of clinical evaluation.
social anxiety disorder;atypical depression;comorbidity;bipolar disorder