Posttraumatic stress disorder and quality of life: extension of findings to veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
ABSTRACT The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan-Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom, or OEF/OIF-have created unique conditions for promoting the development of psychological difficulties such as posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). PTSD is an important outcome because it can affect quality of life, impairing psychosocial and occupational functioning and overall well-being. The literature on PTSD and quality of life in OEF/OIF Veterans is at an early stage, but the consistency of the evidence is striking. Our review indicates that the findings on PTSD and quality of life in OEF/OIF veterans are comparable to findings obtained from other war cohorts and from nonveterans as well. Even though the duration of PTSD in OEF/OIF Veterans is much shorter than in Vietnam Veterans, for example, those with PTSD in both cohorts are likely to experience poorer functioning and lower objective living conditions and satisfaction. The review ends with discussion of the implications of the evidence for research and clinical practice.
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ABSTRACT: Evidence-based psychotherapies (EBP) for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder are not utilized to their full extent within the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). VA provides care to many persons with PTSD and has been in the forefront of clinical practice guidelines and EBP training and dissemination. Yet VA continues to find EBP implementation difficult. Veterans with PTSD often initially present to prescribing clinicians, who then help make care decisions. It is therefore critical that these clinicians correctly screen and triage appropriate mental health care. The purpose of this study was to assess VA prescribing clinicians' knowledge, perceptions, and referral behaviors related to EBPs for PTSD and to identify facilitators and barriers to implementing EBPs within VA. We conducted qualitative interviews with 26 VA prescribing clinicians. Limited access to EBPs was the most commonly noted barrier. The clinicians we interviewed also held specific beliefs and behaviors that may delay or deter EBPs. Strategies to improve utilization also emerged. Findings suggest the need for increased access to EBPs, training to optimize the role of prescribing clinicians in helping Veterans with PTSD make appropriate care decisions, and specific organizational changes to facilitate access and effective referral systems for EBPs.Behavioral Sciences. 10/2014; 4(4):410-422.
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ABSTRACT: We assessed the effects of minocycline, a tetracycline with anti-inflammatory, anti-apoptotic and neuroprotective capacities, in an animal model of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Rats were exposed to psychogenic stress and treated 1 h later with minocycline or saline. Behavioral measures included the elevated plus-maze (EPM) and acoustic startle response (ASR) 7 days post stress-exposure. One day after behavioral testing, animals were exposed to a trauma cue and freezing response was assessed. Local levels of cytokines interleukin-1 (IL-1), interleukin-6 (IL-6) and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) in the hippocampus, frontal cortex (FC) and hypothalamus were then examined. Minocycline attenuated anxious-like behaviors in stress-exposed rats. In addition, decreased levels of cytokines were measured in exposed rats treated with minocycline compared to their counterparts treated with saline. This study suggests a potential use of minocycline in preventing physiological and behavioral alternations resulting from acute exposure to psychological stress. As this is the first study to report beneficial outcomes for minocycline treatment in an animal model of PTSD, further investigations of the use of minocycline in stress-related conditions with emphasis on PTSD is needed.European Neuropsychopharmacology 11/2014; 25(1). · 5.40 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Few studies have examined sexual dysfunction among Operations Enduring/Iraqi Freedom (OEF/OIF) veterans with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The present study investigated predictors of erectile dysfunction [ED] and self-reported sexual problems among 150 male combat veterans seeking outpatient treatment for PTSD within the Veterans Affairs healthcare system.Comprehensive Psychiatry 12/2014; · 2.26 Impact Factor