Written by Dr. Vivekanand, MBBS | 

Medically Reviewed by The Medindia Medical Review Team  on Sep 18, 2014

Causes of Agoraphobia

The cause of Agoraphobia is not yet known. Theories are now being suggested that the condition could run in the families.

  • Agoraphobia still remains a condition of unknown cause.
  • The condition usually presents itself in early adulthood and is generally set off with the first instance by any unexpected panic attack.
  • The individual usually describes their first panic attack as 'Sudden' or 'Out of the blue' in nature.
  • There are various theories being researched to identify the reason for the onset of Agoraphobia.

Some Common theories considered are:

  1. Cognitive hypothesis.
  2. Biological theory.
  3. Psychoanalytical theory.

Certain other factors being considered include:

  1. Stress in life
  2. Early experiences with loss of control.
  3. Tendency of a person to breathe too quickly.
  4. Brain chemicals imbalance.
  5. Confusion over the normal symptoms of anxiety.

Though there is not yet any direct evidence, the theory that Agoraphobia could also be due to various causes within the family due to a genetic link is being considered.


  1. Shorter Oxford Textbook of Psychiatry (IVth Edition): Oxford University Press - Michael Gelder, Richard Mayou & Philip Cowen.
  2. A Short Textbook of Psychiatry (Vth Edition): Jaypee Brothers, -Niraj Ahuja, MD.
  3. Oxford Handbook of Clinical Specialities. 6th Edition. Oxford press. -Judith Colier, Murray longmore, Peter Scally.


sopy24 Wednesday, August 28, 2013

hello sir..may be i have this kind of phobia when i travel in crowded train...staying away from my family for job purpose....i feel sweating, vometing, uncomfirtable what should i do....i feel losing control on my body. is der any treatment available for this...

rahul786 Wednesday, October 6, 2010

respected sir i am also feeling these type of fear and facing the same situation presently..... some more situation i face is that due to fear of crowd my stomach is unable to digest food due to fear whatever i had eaten 5 minutes earlier leads to 1st stomach ache then intestnal contraction and then loose motion plz help me

jillian Friday, October 23, 2009

It isn't like me to ever be first for anything. I am 53 and have not left my home but twice in over a year. I have suffered shyness my whole life. I have had a number of stressful episodes in my life and still have been able to overcome them except this one. But now I am at the mercy of my daughter to help me and I want to find a way forward. I don't have insurance so I can't get medical help. What help is there for me????

guest Tuesday, November 24, 2009

I've had agoraphobia since I was 16 and the best book is by Claire Weeks, Simple Effective Treatment for Agoraphobia. It's simple, makes sense and really helps. The correct medication is really helpful. You can do it!

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