A sudden episode of intense fear that triggers severe physical reactions when there is no real danger or apparent cause.


Practice stress management techniques, such as yoga, deep breathing, and progressive relaxation. Avoiding caffeine, alcohol, smoking, and recreational drugs may also help.

When to seek immediate medical care

See a doctor immediately if:

  • Pressure, tightness, pain, or a squeezing or aching sensation in chest or arms that may spread to neck, jaw, or back
  • Nausea, indigestion, heartburn, or belly pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Rapid or irregular heartbeat
  • Lightheadedness or sudden dizziness

When to make a doctor's appointment

Make an appointment to see a doctor if:

  • Affecting health, job, or relationships
  • Recurrent

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