The role of social isolation in social anxiety disorder: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Alan R. Teo, Robert Lerrigo, Mary A.M. Rogers

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

110 Scopus citations


Introduction: Social isolation in the context of social anxiety disorder has not been closely examined. This study aimed to describe the role and measurement of social isolation in those with social anxiety disorder. Method: A systematic review and meta-analyses were conducted using a prospectively prepared protocol for search strategy, selection criteria, and data extraction. DerSimonian-Laird random effects models were used to calculate pooled estimates of effect. Results: Thirty-four studies, containing 20 formal instruments and four other measures of social isolation, were included. Most formal instruments were utilized in single studies, whereas simple structural measures (e.g., living alone) were used most frequently. The pooled score was 38.1 on the Loneliness and Social Dissatisfaction Questionnaire, 33.1 on the Liebowitz Social Anxiety Scale (avoidance subscale), and 21.1 on the Social Avoidance and Distress Scale. Conclusions: Social isolation is common in social anxiety disorder but assessed by a heterogeneous mix of measures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)353-364
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Anxiety Disorders
Issue number4
StatePublished - May 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Social networks
  • Social phobia
  • Social relationships
  • Social support

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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