Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Post Traumatic Stress Has Tripled Among Combat-exposed Military Personnel

Date:
January 17, 2008
Source:
British Medical Journal
Summary:
There has been a threefold increase in new cases of self reported post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms among combat-exposed military personnel since 2001, according to a new study. Concerns have been raised about the health impact of military deployment. Studies have estimated as many as 30% of Vietnam War veterans developed post-traumatic stress disorder at some point following the war and, among 1991 Gulf War veterans, as many as 10% were reported to have post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms years after returning from deployment.

There has been a threefold increase in new cases of self reported post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms among combat-exposed military personnel since 2001, according to a study published on the British Medical Journal website.

Concerns have been raised about the health impact of military deployment. Studies have estimated as many as 30% of Vietnam War veterans developed post-traumatic stress disorder at some point following the war and, among 1991 Gulf War veterans, as many as 10% were reported to have post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms years after returning from deployment.

So researchers in San Diego analysed the effect of deployment on over 50,000 military personnel who were taking part in the Millennium Cohort Study (a large 22-year study of the health of US military personnel).

Baseline data were obtained between July 2001 and June 2003 (before the wars in Iraq and Afganistan) and participants were surveyed about their health three years later (June 2004 to February 2006).

Combat exposure was assessed and new onset post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms were measured using recognised criteria. Other information, such as cigarette smoking and problem alcohol drinking, was also recorded.

Over 40% of participants were deployed between 2001 and 2006; 24% deployed for the first time in support of the wars in Iraq and Afganistan between baseline and follow-up.

New onset post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms or diagnosis were reported by up to 87 per 1000 combat-deployed personnel and up to 21 per 1000 non-combat deployed personnel.

New onset symptoms were proportionately higher among participants who were female, divorced, enlisted, and in those who reported being a current smoker or problem drinker at baseline.

Persistent symptoms were found in 40-50% of participants who had post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms at baseline, suggesting that resolution of post-traumatic stress disorder may not be expected for several years.

These data show overall new incidence rates of 10 to 13 cases per 1000 person years and suggest a threefold increase in new onset self reported post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms or diagnosis among recently deployed military personnel with combat exposures, say the authors.

While the overall prevalence of post-traumatic stress disorder in the military is not high, a substantial number of new cases can be expected based on the number of service personnel deployed and exposed to combat in the wars in Iraq and Afganistan.

Identifying personnel with symptoms early may lead to a smaller burden of the disorder in the years to come if appropriate and timely treatments are provided. Meanwhile, future research should include efforts to better understand the resiliency and vulnerability to post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms among combat deployers, they conclude.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by British Medical Journal. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

British Medical Journal. "Post Traumatic Stress Has Tripled Among Combat-exposed Military Personnel." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 January 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/01/080116193412.htm>.
British Medical Journal. (2008, January 17). Post Traumatic Stress Has Tripled Among Combat-exposed Military Personnel. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/01/080116193412.htm
British Medical Journal. "Post Traumatic Stress Has Tripled Among Combat-exposed Military Personnel." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/01/080116193412.htm (accessed September 18, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Corporal Punishment on Decline, Debate Renews

Corporal Punishment on Decline, Debate Renews

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) Corporal punishment in the United States is on the decline, but there is renewed debate over its use after Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson was charged with child abuse. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
FDA Eyes Skin Shocks Used at Mass. School

FDA Eyes Skin Shocks Used at Mass. School

AP (Sep. 15, 2014) The FDA is considering whether to ban devices used by the Judge Rotenberg Educational Center in Canton, Massachusetts, the only place in the country known to use electrical skin shocks as aversive conditioning for aggressive patients. (Sept. 15) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Shocker: Journalists Are Utterly Addicted To Coffee

Shocker: Journalists Are Utterly Addicted To Coffee

Newsy (Sep. 13, 2014) A U.K. survey found that journalists consumed the most amount of coffee, but that's only the tip of the coffee-related statistics iceberg. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
'Magic Mushrooms' Could Help Smokers Quit

'Magic Mushrooms' Could Help Smokers Quit

Newsy (Sep. 11, 2014) In a small study, researchers found that the majority of long-time smokers quit after taking psilocybin pills and undergoing therapy sessions. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins