Clinical studies

In our clinical studies, we investigate new diagnosis and therapy methods for anxiety disorders in cooperation with other hospitals, universities, and medical practices. In addition, we study ways of preventing anxiety disorders, and analyze potential markers to predict the effectiveness of therapy.

Ongoing studies

We are currently conducting several clinical studies on the broad topic of anxiety disorders at the CAC. For these studies, we are regularly looking for probands, as recruitment is not yet completed. Therefore, under certain conditions, it is possible for interested persons to participate in one of our studies.

Development of anxiety disorders in children and adolescents

How and why do anxiety disorders at a young age develop? How can the development be prevented? From the results of the large-scale analysis of the mechanisms of anxiety development, the recording of anxiety or the psychological resilience of a child or adolescent in the context of the circumstances of life, we expect to develop strategies that contribute to the prevention of the onset of anxiety. The assessment also includes the respective genetic predisposition, which is determined by means of a saliva sample.

This is the first large clinical study worldwide that attempts to decipher the development of anxiety disorders in childhood in a comprehensive approach.

Requirements for probands
Both healthy children and adolescents (aged between eight and 17 years) as well as those suffering from an anxiety disorder can participate.

If you are interested, please contact us:
Lisa Brandstetter, M.Sc., PhD student
Katharina Kneer, M.Sc., Psychologist
Kimberly Mowat, B.Sc., PhD student
Dr. rer. nat. Julia Reinhard
Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Psychosomatics and Psychotherapy (KJPPP)
E-mail: kj_angst@ or kj_studie@

Prevention of anxiety disorders in children

Anxiety disorders are among the most common mental disorders in children and often lead to severe anxiety disorders in adulthood. This study investigates to what extent the occurrence of anxiety disorders can be reduced by a prevention program. In five sessions, participants will practice techniques to better deal with stressful and frightening situations.

Requirements for probands
The study is aimed at children aged eight to eleven years who do not have a mental disorder, but who are more or less anxious within normal limits.

If you are interested in participating, please contact
Katharina Kneer, M.Sc., Psychologist
Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Psychosomatics and Psychotherapy (KJPPP)
e-mail: kj_angst@


Exposure therapy - the confrontation with the anxiety-inducing stimulus - is one of the methods of choice for treating anxiety disorders. Although the effectiveness of this form of therapy has been proven in many studies, little is known about which individual elements or procedures of the therapy are effective in which patients and why. The ELAN therapy study examines these questions in so-called short-term therapies.

Requirements for probands
Adults with social phobias can participate in the ELAN study. This includes patients with anxiety attacks or panic attacks, who do not dare to socialize with people for fear of being embarrassed or badly assessed, or who avoid being far away from home.

If you are interested, please contact us:
Juliane Boschet M.Sc., Psychologist
or PD Dr. rer. nat. André Pittig, psychologist
University outpatient clinic for psychotherapy
Phone: +49 931 31-80821
e-mail: elan@

Fear of heights and rTMS

Although cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is very effective in treating anxiety disorders, not all patients respond optimally to this therapy. In the study, which is funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG), we investigate non-invasive brain stimulation (NIBS) as an additional method of psychotherapy for anxiety disorders. In this procedure, brain activity is stimulated by electrical or magnetic impulses from outside. At CAC we are testing whether the additional use of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) can enhance and accelerate exposure therapy in the treatment of the fear of heights.

Requirements for probands
Adults who suffer from severe fear of heights, also known as acrophobia.

If you are interested, please contact us:
Prof. Dr. phil. Martin Herrmann
Clinic and Polyclinic for Psychiatry, Psychosomatics and Psychotherapy (PPP)
Senior Psychologist
e-mail: herrmann_m@

Fear of blood and injections

People who suffer from this particular form of phobia have trouble with blood. Often the sight of a syringe or a small injury is enough to make them feel queasy or even faint. A pronounced blood-syringe phobia is a major problem for those affected, as it is not uncommon for medical examinations and treatments to become impossible. We are currently conducting a broad survey of patients at the University Hospital to determine the extent and prevalence of this phobia. The survey will serve as a basis for further investigations and possible support.

Requirements for probands
Adults who have a fear of blood and react with fainting when blood is taken. It is not possible to become a participant by contacting us – we actively seek out patients of University Hospital Würzburg.

Cand. med. Marie Edel, PhD student
Prof. Dr. med. Angelika Erhardt-Lehmann
Department of Psychiatry, Psychosomatics and Psychotherapy (PPP)
W2 professorship for clinical anxiety research
E-mail: erhardt_A@

Completed studies

The following studies have already been completed or have progressed so far that no new participants will be accepted.


It is estimated that more than twelve million Germans suffer from some form of an anxiety disorder. For a significant percentage of these, everyday life is severely impaired. Finding a suitable therapy for such an anxiety disorder is not easy.

The PROTECT-AD research association has joined forces in a broad-based study to optimize the therapy and care of anxiety disorders, to reduce long waiting times, and to improve the effectiveness of therapy methods.

The aim of the CAC is to establish a both intensive and sustainable short-term therapy that is accessible to all patients.

Recruitment is completed!

Further information
You can find detailed information in the study leaflet, on the BMBF PROTECT-AD research page of the CAC, and on the homepage of the PROTECT-AD research network.

KibA – Children cope with fear

The project "Children cope with fear" (Kinder bewältigen Angst)analyses which factors have an influence on the successful treatment of children with anxiety disorders and their families, and how this treatment can be further improved. In detail, we examine whether it is better, for example, to concentrate on the child alone in therapy or to involve the parents. In addition, we investigate the influence of therapy on physical anxiety reactions.
The Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Psychosomatics and Psychotherapy (KJPPP) is one of four treatment centers treating 400 children and their families throughout Germany as part of this study.

Recruitment is completed!

Further Information
More information is available on the KibA study website.

Spider VR

Revulsion against spiders is very common. However, if the mere sight of these eight-legged animals leads to panic attacks with palpitations, sweating, or even shortness of breath, we are dealing with a spider phobia, which should be treated. Within the framework of the Collaborative Research Center (CRC) Transregio 58, patients receive exposure therapy in virtual reality (VR) in the therapy study "Spider VR". The aim of the study is to investigate neurobiological mechanisms of action of the therapy, and to identify characteristics that allow a prognosis of the success of treatment.

Recruitment is completed!

Further information
Detailed information about "Spider VR" and the Collaborative Research Center “Fear, Anxiety, Anxiety Disorders” (CRC Transregio 58) can be found on the research page of the CAC as well as on the project page of the study and in the study leaflet.


The acronym stands for “prevention of anxiety through anxiety sensitivity training”. This describes the goal of the study, which is to develop and offer a preventive program for people with an increased risk of anxiety disorders, so that anxiety disorders do not develop in the first place. For this purpose we investigate the biological and psychological risk factors of anxiety and observe the effectiveness of a prevention training, which among other things focuses on how to deal with physical sensations of anxiety and stress.

Recruitment is complete!

Further information
For more information, please refer to the CAC's focus page on prevention and the study leaflet.

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