A pharmacotherapeutic approach to the management of chronic posttraumatic stress disorder

Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, Albany, NY, USA.
Journal of Pharmacy Practice 04/2012; 25(5):541-51. DOI: 10.1177/0897190012442714
Source: PubMed


Due to relatively recent and ongoing world events (eg, terrorist attacks, wars, and natural disasters), there has been a shift in attention from some of the more common psychiatric illnesses to one of the more elusive, namely, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). PTSD is a severe, and often chronic, condition that can lead to significant morbidity and mortality. Although originally a condition seen primarily among war veterans, PTSD is now becoming more prevalent in the general community. PTSD often presents concurrently with other conditions, such as depression, bipolar, anxiety/panic disorders, and alcohol and drug abuse. Because of this, PTSD often goes unrecognized and is underdiagnosed in clinical practice. Thus, an opportunity for pharmacist intervention exists, both in the institution and in the community. With proper education and training, pharmacists can be efficient in screening for signs and symptoms of PTSD, triaging appropriate patients, and can play an integral role in managing the diverse array of drug therapy options for PTSD.

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