Thursday, May 24, 2012

Jennifer Fairchild completes dissertation in the School of Psychology

The Role of Distress in Posttraumatic Stress Disorder among Combat Veterans

This study investigated the role of non-specific distress in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among combat veterans who sustained traumatic brain injury. Specifically, Personality Assessment Inventory (PAI) profiles and Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CES-D) scores were reviewed in light of veterans classified according to symptoms of PTSD. Results revealed that veterans endorsing PTSD symptomatology experience significantly more distress as indicated by elevations on the following PAI clinical scales: somatic complaints, anxiety, anxiety-related disorders, depression, paranoia, schizophrenia, and borderline features. Two of the schizophrenia subscales (i.e., social detachment and thought disorders) were also examined and found to be significantly elevated. The CES-D was utilized in an effort to evaluate distress and depression differences in veterans with PTSD symptoms compared to those without PTSD, but with elevated anxiety. This analysis revealed a slightly greater overlap in veterans endorsing PTSD symptoms.

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