intolerance to uncertainty as epiphenomenic sensitization factor for PLES in young adults with social anxiety disorder: mapping a possible pathway to psychosis Social anxiety disorder (SaD) is one of the most common diagnoses in the prodromal phases of psychotic symptoms/psychotic onset. Nevertheless, the high incidence of SaD in adolescents and young adults does not allow to discriminate which subjects with this diagnosis are at higher risk of developing psychotic symptoms. Therefore, we inves- tigate if further psychopathological markers are able to discriminate sub- jects with SaD that are more prone to develop Psychotic Like Experiences (PLEs). The aim of the study is to investigate if Intolerance to Uncertainty (IU) can represent a possible specifi c psychopathological marker of sensitiza- tion for PLEs and therefore for psychotic onset in SaD. Method: The study was carried out on a sample of 139 help-seekers young adults (age 19–25) with a SaD (DSM-IV-TR). IU was evaluated using the Intolerance to Uncertainty Scale (IUS). PLEs and negative symptoms were evaluated using the Community Assessment of Psychic Experiences (CAPE), anxiety and depression symptoms were evaluated using Beck Depression Inventory-II and Beck Anxiety Inventory. The sample was splitted into two subsamples (low-IU = 67; high-IU = 64) using the median IUS score as cut-off value. After controlling for the homogeneity of the two subsamples for sociodemographic variables, regression analysis with forward method and Wald test was conducted using low-IU/high-IU as dependent variable. Results: Regression analysis showed that PLEs and negative symptoms are signifi cantly ( P < 0.0001) more intense, frequent and distressing in high-IU subsample. Conclusion: This study confi rms that IU increases the risk of developing PLEs and negative symptoms in young adults with SaD.
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