Article

Neurological status of Vietnam veterans with chronic posttraumatic stress disorder

Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Manchester, New Hampshire 03103.
Journal of Neuropsychiatry (Impact Factor: 2.77). 02/1993; 5(2):183-8.
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT This study investigated neurological status in 27 medication-free outpatient Vietnam veterans meeting DSM-III-R criteria for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and 15 non-PTSD combat control subjects, all without alcohol or drug dependence or abuse during the past year. Subjects underwent neurological examination, neuropsychological testing, and sleep-deprived EEG. PTSD subjects showed significantly more neurological soft signs than non-PTSD subjects. Neither substance dependence/abuse nor the more frequent history of developmental problems in PTSD subjects accounted for this difference. There were no significant EEG or neuropsychological testing group differences; however, there were significant correlations between several neuropsychological test scores and total neurological soft signs.

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    • "DOI: 10.1002/jts.21887 Findings in the literature indicate a robust impairment in memory for episodic, emotionally neutral, nonautobiographical information in PTSD (see a meta-analysis by Brewin, Kleiner, Vasterling, & Field, 2007), with studies reporting learning (initial and single-trial list learning) and memory deficits (immediate and delayed for verbal and visuospatial information, working memory and executive memory; Bremner et al., 1993, 1995; Gurvits et al., 1993, 1996; Jenkins, Langlais, Delis, & Cohen, 1998; Kanagaratnam & Asbjornsen, 2007; Stein, Kennedy, & Twamley, 2002; Vasterling et al., 2002; Yehuda, Golier, Halligan, & Harvey, 2004; Yehuda et al., 1995). Cognitive impairment in memory of stories, executive function (Beckham, Crawford, & Feldman, 1998), attention (sustained attention, focus of attention and attention shifting), language-and information-processing speed, are more controversial (Isaac, Cushway, & Jones, 2006; Scott, Lesselyong, & Yaffe, 2012). "
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    • "Classical measures of flexibility and switching include the Trail-Making Test (TMT, Partington and Leiter, 1949; Reynolds, 2002; Delis, et al 2001; Reitan, 1958), involving connection of " dots " while switching between letter and number (i.e., 1-A- 2-B-3-C), and verbal fluency switching (as in the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function Scale [D-KEFS]) (Delis et al., 2001), involving the production of words while switching between two categories. Some studies with PTSD have reported impairment (e.g., increased time on TMT; decreased total words on fluency) on such tasks (Stein et al., 2002; Beckham et al., 1998; Jenkins et al., 2000), while others have not (Zalewski et al., 1994; Twamley et al., 2004, 2009; Lagarde et al., 2010; Barrett et al., 1996; Crowell et al., 2002; Gurvits et al., 1993; Leskin and White, 2007). Executive function measures involving the added dimensions of planning and strategy use include, among others, the Wisconsin Card-Sorting Test (WCST) (Heaton, 1981) and Tower of London Task (Simon, 1975; Shallice, 1982). "
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