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the unpleasant emotional state consisting of psychological and psychophysiological responses to a real external threat or danger. See also anxiety. Fear is a nursing diagnosis accepted by the North American Nursing Diagnosis Association, who defined it as a response to a perceived threat that is consciously recognized as a danger. Causative factors may include separation from one's support system in a potentially threatening situation such as hospitalization, diagnostic test, or treatment; knowledge deficit or unfamiliarity; language barrier; sensory impairment; and phobic stimulus or phobia.

Persons experiencing fear may verbalize increased tension, apprehension, diminished self-assurance, panic, or a jittery feeling. Objective signs include increased alertness; concentration on the source of fear; attack and fight-or-flight behaviors; and evidence of sympathetic nerve stimulation such as cardiovascular excitation, superficial vasoconstriction, and dilation of the pupils. Interventions are aimed at helping the individual to identify effective and ineffective coping behaviors, promote effective coping strategies, and maintain psychological equilibrium.
Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. © 2003 by Saunders, an imprint of Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.


Apprehension; dread; alarm; by having an identifiable stimulus, fear is differentiated from anxiety which has no easily identifiable stimulus.
[A.S. faer]
Farlex Partner Medical Dictionary © Farlex 2012


Apprehension; dread; alarm; by having an identifiable stimulus, fear is differentiated from anxiety, which has no easily identifiable stimulus.
[A.S. faer]
Medical Dictionary for the Health Professions and Nursing © Farlex 2012


The response to a real or imagined perception of danger. An abnormal degree of fear, or a fear inappropriate to its cause is called a phobia. Fear is accompanied by physical symptoms such as rapid heart action, muscle tension especially in the abdomen, dryness of the throat and sweating. These symptoms are mainly caused by ADRENALINE. It is believed that separate nuclei in the amygdala mediate different aspects of fear-conditioned behaviour.
Collins Dictionary of Medicine © Robert M. Youngson 2004, 2005


Apprehension; dread; alarm; by having an identifiable stimulus.
[A.S. faer]
Medical Dictionary for the Dental Professions © Farlex 2012

Patient discussion about fear

Q. am sexy yet fear ladies

A. you are not very descriptive but from what i understand you have a very common problem and the best solution is going to therapy. a psychologist will diagnose you, see where the fear is coming from and help you getting over it. good luck!

Q. I fear whether this could affect my fetus too? hi everyone …..My growing confusion for the pregnancy is being messed up with the infection of Lyme, I feel my hands not in order with pain in joints and it was there before pregnancy but I did not pay attention and I am now in the first trimester and this Lyme infection is adding fuel to the fire. I fear whether this could affect my fetus too. I discussed with the doctor but didn’t get valuable input and I have been asked to wait for some more time. She didn’t refer me to the specialist also. This is causing me great concern/…………..I feel depressed………..

A. Hey…be cool….nothing like that…..It seems your ignorance has taken the form of depression, but just to make it clear, I too was infected with Lyme in my 2 nd pregnancy and my son is now learning guitar from his dad. I too had same doubt 6 years before and it all ruined down and I am pregnant again. I just followed my Gynecologist advice and didn’t doubt her. I am not a qualified professional to talk about the problem in detail but a women having had that trouble but had healthy pregnancy without any problem.

Q. i have fear from hightes ... is there any way how to treat it and make it go a way or at least help me a bit

A. Yes. It's possible to treat it, usually through sessions with a psychologist in the form of behavioral therapy or psychotherapist. It should be done by a professional, of course.

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References in periodicals archive ?
Being unable to recall ambiguous associative events may add to some people's belief that they have always been fearful, a belief that has provided much of the support for the non-associative view of fear acquisition (Poulton & Menzies, 2002b).
* TO add your review of Audrey Niffenegger's HER FEARFUL SYMMETRY, the Gazette's Book Club Book of the Month for August, log on to www.gazettelive.co.uk/bookclub where you can also read an archive of book reviews
Only girls associated the snake or spider that they originally saw with a fearful reaction and then acted on that knowledge, looking longer at the unexpected appearance of a happy face with a new snake or spider, Rakison proposes.
He moved forward with an early interest rate hike as planned and his detractors in the Liberal Democratic Party, already fearful of further stock market losses, are already blaming him for pandering to the public to save his political hide.
"You'd be amazed at the churches around the country that won't take our voter guides because they're fearful," Combs said.
The declassification "was rebuffed by higher-level agency policymakers, who by the next year were fearful that it might prompt uncomfortable comparisons with the flawed intelligence used to justify the war in Iraq" the Times reported, citing "an intelligence official familiar with some internal discussions of the matter."
Just when their lives seem to be calm, the townspeople rise up against the sorceress, fearful of her magic.
Her subtle command of Language and use of imagery features nature as a dramatic player, and the communion with ghosts, both loved and fearful is astoundingly evoked.
However, over the years carefully considered low income housing plans have been delayed or defeated by fearful neighbors.
As a young child, I was very fearful but I reached up and brushed it off, whereupon it flew to the concrete step that led to the barn door.
Half-American, half-Chinese Xiao Mei is both excited and fearful as she sets foot in a strange land, yet the words of her grandmother--to look about herself and remember--reverberate in her heart.