Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

90 percent of firefighters exhibit symptoms of PTSD, Israeli study suggests

Date:
February 23, 2012
Source:
American Associates, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
Summary:
A new study on the prevalence of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) among firefighters in Israel indicates that approximately 90 percent show some form of full or partial symptoms.

A new study on the prevalence of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) among firefighters in Israel indicates that approximately 90 percent show some form of full or partial symptoms.

According to the study by Ben-Gurion University of the Negev's Dr. Marc Lougassi, a firefighter himself, 24 percent of active firefighters in Israel suffer from full PTSD, 67 percent display partial PTSD while only nine percent showed no symptoms.

PTSD can occur after exposure to serious injury to oneself or another, or another's death and then result in recurring stress symptoms such as nightmares, trouble sleeping and other difficulties for over a month.

According to Dr. Lougassi, "Professional firefighters are frequently exposed to extreme stress during their work in emergency situations. In addition to the physical challenges of firefighting, they must evacuate burned and injured victims or bodies. Their involvement in traumatic events exposes them not only to the pressures stemming from the traumatic event itself, but also to post-traumatic emotional expressions that result in secondary traumatization."

"As far as Israeli firefighters are concerned, there has been no documented evidence of PTSD prevalence, despite the fact that they are exposed to additional traumas such as war and terror strikes," says Lougassi about the first of its kind study.

Approximately 342 active firefighters were recruited for this study, from all age groups, marital statuses (single, married, divorced), educational backgrounds, seniority levels (over two years), roles (firefighter, crew leader, officer, service commander, etc.). Firefighters with a psychiatric background, head injuries (loss of consciousness and neurological disturbances), in psychiatric and/or psychological treatment, with chronic diseases and those taking medications on a regular basis were excluded from the sample.

An additional 42 firefighters from flight firefighting services at Ben-Gurion Airport constituted the control group, since firefighters are not exposed to similar events. Only five percent of the control group showed signs of PTSD.

"These results support the hypothesis that increased exposure to recurring traumatizing events is a significant factor contributing to PTSD development," according to Lougassi.

"The findings of this study can help researchers and the Israeli Firefighting Service improve the firefighters' abilities to cope with extended exposure to traumatizing events through professional intervention programs," he suggests.

"Moreover, these results can help the Israeli Firefighting Services develop appropriate screening tools to be used during the recruiting process of new firefighters, in order to assure their future psychological safety."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Associates, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Associates, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. "90 percent of firefighters exhibit symptoms of PTSD, Israeli study suggests." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 February 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/02/120223133324.htm>.
American Associates, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. (2012, February 23). 90 percent of firefighters exhibit symptoms of PTSD, Israeli study suggests. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/02/120223133324.htm
American Associates, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. "90 percent of firefighters exhibit symptoms of PTSD, Israeli study suggests." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/02/120223133324.htm (accessed April 23, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Study Says Most Crime Not Linked To Mental Illness

Study Says Most Crime Not Linked To Mental Illness

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) A new study finds most crimes committed by people with mental illness are not caused by symptoms of their illness or disorder. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Smaller Plates And Cutlery Could Make You Feel Fuller

How Smaller Plates And Cutlery Could Make You Feel Fuller

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) NBC's "Today" conducted an experiment to see if changing the size of plates and utensils affects the amount individuals eat. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Do We Get Nicer With Age?

Do We Get Nicer With Age?

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) A recent report claims personality can change over time as we age, and usually that means becoming nicer and more emotionally stable. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How to Master Motherhood With the Best Work/Life Balance

How to Master Motherhood With the Best Work/Life Balance

TheStreet (Apr. 22, 2014) In the U.S., there are more than 11 million couples trying to conceive at any given time. From helping celebrity moms like Bethanny Frankel to ordinary soon-to-be-moms, TV personality and parenting expert, Rosie Pope, gives you the inside scoop on mastering motherhood. London-born entrepreneur Pope is the creative force behind Rosie Pope Maternity and MomPrep. She explains why being an entrepreneur offers the best life balance for her and tips for all types of moms. Video provided by TheStreet
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