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Jones AL, Rafferty J, Cochran SD, Abelson J, Mays VM. Persistence, Impairment, Disability and Unmet Treatment of Lifetime and 12-Month Anxiety Disorders in Black Men and Women, 50 Years of Age and Older. Journal of aging and health. 2022 Jun 1; 34(3):378-389.
To examine anxiety disorders in aging Black adults. Using nationally representative data from the National Survey of American Life, we estimated lifetime/12-month prevalence of anxiety disorders in Black men and women, age 50+ ( = 1561). Disorder-specific persistence and severity, functional impairment, and mental health service utilization were investigated using multivariate regressions. Black men and women who met criteria for anxiety disorders (lifetime prevalence = 12.4%/18.3% in men/women) also demonstrated persistent disorders (percent meeting criteria = 40.3%-61.2%). Those with a 12-month anxiety disorder (6.2%/10.5% of men/women) typically reported severe task interference (38.3%-85.7%). Those with any 12-month anxiety disorder, compared to those without, experienced greater impairment in days out of role, work, family burden, cognition and, in women, mobility ('s < .05). Only 47.0%/65.2% of Black men/women with any lifetime anxiety disorder used mental health services. Despite low prevalence, older Blacks with anxiety disorders experience substantial mental health burden in middle age and later.