Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Genetic role in post-traumatic stress

When she first sought help at the UNSW Traumatic Stress Clinic, it was clear that Helen Fraser (not her real name) was in a bad way. A survivor of the appalling 2009 Black Saturday bushfires in Victoria, she could not shake ...

Sep 08, 2011
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Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a severe anxiety disorder that can develop after exposure to any event that results in psychological trauma. This event may involve the threat of death to oneself or to someone else, or to one's own or someone else's physical, sexual, or psychological integrity, overwhelming the individual's ability to cope. As an effect of psychological trauma, PTSD is less frequent and more enduring than the more commonly seen acute stress response. Diagnostic symptoms for PTSD include re-experiencing the original trauma(s) through flashbacks or nightmares, avoidance of stimuli associated with the trauma, and increased arousal—such as difficulty falling or staying asleep, anger, and hypervigilance. Formal diagnostic criteria (both DSM-IV-TR and ICD-10) require that the symptoms last more than one month and cause significant impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning.

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