Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Increased risk for cardiac ischemia in patients with PTSD

Date:
December 2, 2013
Source:
Elsevier
Summary:
There is growing concern that long-term untreated posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms may increase the risk of developing a number of medical problems, particularly compromised cardiovascular health. Considering that up to 30% of veterans suffer from PTSD, this is an important goal.

There is growing concern that long-term untreated posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms may increase the risk of developing a number of medical problems, particularly compromised cardiovascular health.

Related Articles


Heart disease remains the leading cause of death worldwide, according to the World Health Organization. Cardiovascular disease is an umbrella term for diseases of the heart and blood vessels. There are multiple known risk factors, including age, family history, smoking, obesity, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol.

Prior studies show that individuals with PTSD are at increased risk of cardiovascular disease. However, most of these studies proposed this relationship on the basis of self-report measures, creating a need for objective studies to establish the validity of this hypothesis.

In this issue of Biological Psychiatry, Jesse Turner and colleagues at the University of California, San Francisco have done just that and now report new evidence of elevated rates of myocardial ischemia in patients with PTSD..

They recruited 663 outpatients from two Veterans Affairs Medical Centers who underwent a series of assessments, including questionnaires and a blood test to determine their risk factors for cardiovascular disease. Each also completed a structured interview with a clinician, which resulted in a diagnosis of PTSD for 230 of the veterans. Lastly, the participants performed standardized exercise treadmill tests, commonly called 'stress tests', which were used to detect ischemia.

The researchers detected the presence of myocardial ischemia in 17% of the participants with PTSD but only 10% of participants without PTSD. This increase was not explained by differences in traditional cardiac risk factors, health behaviors like alcohol use and sleep quality, or depression.

"Persistent PTSD symptoms produce more than psychological distress; they constitute a major adaptive challenge for the entire body," commented Dr. John Krystal, Editor of Biological Psychiatry. "Increased risk for cardiac ischemia may turn out to be an important new concern for individuals suffering from long-standing untreated PTSD."

"This study adds to a growing literature demonstrating the objective effects of PTSD on the heart. An important next step for this area of research will be to identify the mechanisms through which PTSD may damage the cardiovascular system. Though we controlled for several potential mechanisms, such as traditional cardiovascular disease risk factors, these did not explain the association of PTSD and ischemia," said Dr. Beth Cohen, senior author on the project. "Determining precisely how PTSD can affect the heart will allow us to develop new, tailored treatments to improve the health of veterans and others who experience PTSD."

Considering that up to 30% of veterans suffer from PTSD, this is an important goal. For now, it is increasingly clear that, veteran or not, any individuals suffering from PTSD should seek treatment.


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. Jesse H. Turner, Thomas C. Neylan, Nelson B. Schiller, Yongmei Li, Beth E. Cohen. Objective Evidence of Myocardial Ischemia in Patients with Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. Biological Psychiatry, 2013; 74 (11): 861 DOI: 10.1016/j.biopsych.2013.07.012

Cite This Page:

Elsevier. "Increased risk for cardiac ischemia in patients with PTSD." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 2 December 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/12/131202121310.htm>.
Elsevier. (2013, December 2). Increased risk for cardiac ischemia in patients with PTSD. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 21, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/12/131202121310.htm
Elsevier. "Increased risk for cardiac ischemia in patients with PTSD." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/12/131202121310.htm (accessed April 21, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Our Love Of Puppy Dog Eyes Explained By Science

Our Love Of Puppy Dog Eyes Explained By Science

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2015) Researchers found a spike in oxytocin occurs in both humans and dogs when they gaze into each other&apos;s eyes. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Find Link Between Gestational Diabetes And Autism

Scientists Find Link Between Gestational Diabetes And Autism

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2015) Researchers who analyzed data from over 300,000 kids and their mothers say they&apos;ve found a link between gestational diabetes and autism. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Video Messages Help Reassure Dementia Patients

Video Messages Help Reassure Dementia Patients

AP (Apr. 17, 2015) Family members are prerecording messages as part of a unique pilot program at the Hebrew Home in New York. The videos are trying to help victims of Alzheimer&apos;s disease and other forms of dementia break through the morning fog of forgetfulness. (April 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Common Pain Reliever Might Dull Your Emotions

Common Pain Reliever Might Dull Your Emotions

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2015) Each week, millions of Americans take acetaminophen to dull minor aches and pains. Now researchers say it might blunt life&apos;s highs and lows, too. 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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

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