Clinical Psychopharmacology and Neuroscience Papers in Press available online.

Association between heart rate variability indices and depressed mood in patients with panic disorder
Sumin Hong 1, Doo-Heum Park 1,2, Seung-Ho Ryu 1,2, Jee Hyun Ha 1,2, Hong Jun Jeon 1,2,*
1Department of Psychiatry, Konkuk University Medical Center, Seoul, Korea, 2Department of Psychiatry, Konkuk University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea
Objective: Heart rate variability (HRV) reflects the regulation of the autonomic nervous system. Panic disorder is highly associated with autonomic dysfunction, and is often accompanied by depression. The aim of this study is to determine the association between depression and heart rate variability (HRV) indices in patients with panic disorder.
Methods: A total of 110 outpatients diagnosed with panic disorder participated in this study. The medical records of patients with panic disorder who visited the outpatient clinic of Konkuk University Hospital between December 2018 and March 2020 were retrospectively reviewed. Measurements used in this study include the Panic Disorder Severity Scale-Self Report (PDSS-SR), Beck Depression Inventory (BDI-II), Insomnia Severity Index (ISI), and Heart Rate Variability (HRV). Patients were divided into depressive and non-depressive groups based on their BDI-II scores. The association between HRV indices and depressive symptoms was statistically analyzed.
Results: The LF/HF ratio was reduced in patients with depression (mean= -0.095, p=0.004 in the above moderate depressive group, mean= -0.120, p=0.020 in the severe depressive group). Significant correlations were found between depressive symptoms and SDNNms (-0.19, p=0.044), VLFms2Hz (-0.22, p=0.021), LF (-0.25, p=0.008), HF (-0.19, p=0.043), and LF/HF (-0.25, p=0.009). Multiple linear regression analysis showed that BDI predicted SDNNms, VLFms2Hz, LF, HF, and LF/HF.
Conclusion: We confirmed that the LF/HF ratio decreases when depression is accompanied by panic disorder. HRV indices may be useful markers for detecting depressive symptoms in patients with panic disorder.
Accepted Manuscript [Submitted on 2021-12-30, Accepted on 2022-02-22]