Anxiety disorders and comorbidities

Physical illnesses can trigger such strong fears that they result in an independent psychological condition, such as an anxiety disorder or even depression. The interrelation – origin, causal chain, possibilities of intervention, progression – and above all treatment strategies of these psychological comorbidities are the subject of our research.

Anxiety caused by physical illness

Any serious diagnosis or illness inevitably triggers feelings of anxiety. Heart attacks, strokes, or cancer findings are drastic life events that lead to uncertainty and leave many anxious questions unanswered. Sometimes, however, the fears take on such proportions that they fulfill the diagnostic criteria of an independent anxiety disorder, and thus additionally severely impair the quality of life. If such an anxiety disorder occurs as a concomitant disease of another underlying disease, this is called comorbidity.

Emergency assistance at the university hospital

If anxiety or panic attacks occur as a concomitant of a physical illness during an inpatient stay at the University Hospital, the psychiatric consultation and liaison service of the Department of Psychiatry, Psychosomatics and Psychotherapy (PPP) offers assistance. At the request of the attending physician, this service provides immediate help on the ward and advises on further treatment.

Heart failure and anxiety disorder

In cooperation with the Comprehensive Heart Failure Center (CHFC), which is located here at University Hospital Würzburg, we are investigating the interactions between chronic heart failure and depression and anxiety disorders. Based on the results of the Mood-HF study,  for example, we are looking for more effective therapy combinations, as certain antidepressants are not effective on their own in patients with cardiac insufficiency. In the DaCFail study, we analyze the body's own stressors that occur in depression or anxiety disorders and potentially promote heart failure.

Psychological comorbidity in rare diseases

People with rare diseases often have an odyssey of diagnostics behind them before they receive a correct diagnosis.  We know from experience that people with such complex symptoms often have a concomitant mental disorder. As a partner of the Center for Rare Diseases ZESE, we are examining in the project ZSE-DUO whether the simultaneous somatic and psychosomatic treatment of patients with rare diseases improves their well-being.


Portraitfoto von Prof. Dr. med. Jürgen Deckert

Prof. Dr. med.
Jürgen Deckert

Direktor der Klinik und Poliklinik für Psychiatrie, Psychosomatik und Psychotherapie (PPP)

+49 931 201-77000

Porträtfoto von Universitätsprofessor Dr. med. Stefan Störk

Prof. Dr. med.
Stefan Störk

Leiter der Klinischen Forschung des DZHI

+49 931 201-46363

Portraitfoto von Prof. Dr. med Helge Hebestreit

Prof. Dr. med.
Helge Hebestreit

Projektleiter ZSE-DUO

+49 931 201-29001

Kontakt, Sprechzeiten


Anmeldung zur ambulanten Behandlung in der Klinik und Poliklinik für Psychiatrie für Psychiatrie, Psychosomatik und Psychotherapie (PPP)
+49 931 201-77800

Anmeldung in der Hochschulambulanz
+ 49 931 3182839

Anmeldung zur ambulanten Behandlung im Klinik und Poliklinik für Kinder- und Jugendpsychiatrie, Psychosomatik und Psychotherapie (KJPPP)
+49 931 201-79600

E-Mail und Fax

Sekretariat PPP

+49 931 201-77020

Sekretariat Hochschulambulanz

+4931 31-828390

Sekretariat KJPPP

+49 931 201-78620



Interdisziplinäres Zentrum für Angsterkrankungen | Universitätsklinikum Würzburg | Magarete-Höppel-Platz 1 |  97078 Würzburg | Deutschland