Psychosocial Adjustment

Children with CVS have been described in the past as more anxious than unaffected peers, and their parents are similarly viewed as being more anxious and prone to view their children as more vulnerable than parents of unaffected children (Reinhart et al. 1977). Recent work confirms relatively high rates of internalizing disorders in children with CVS, with one study finding the prevalence of anxiety and mood disorders to be 47% and 14%, respectively (Tarbell and Li 2008). The high presence of internalizing disorders, most notably anxiety disorders, suggests that a diathesis-stress model may be applicable in illustrating how stress can lead to symptoms of CVS through its effects on the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and the presumed underlying diathesis (Tarbell and Li 2008). Some evidence supports a matrilinear inheritance pattern for CVS and migraine headaches, suggesting complex non-Men-delian inheritance through mitochondrial DNA, patterns that have generated interest in both depression and IBS (Boles et al. 2005).

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