Thursday, June 12, 2014

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder Discussion at Legal Pub ~by Dr. B.

Posttraumatic stress disorder is real and it is a serious condition!(PTSD) has been known to develop after a person is exposed to one or more traumatic events.  Such events range from an assault, a rape, serving in combat or after a near death experience.  The common denominator is that the victim experienced an intense fear, horror, or sense of powerlessness. PTSD symptoms may include recurring flashbacks, avoidance or numbing of memories of the event, and overt agitation.  If symptoms continue for more than a month, sufferers should seek psychological treatment.

To be clear, most people do not experience PTSD after trauma.  While plaintiffs involved in litigation often claim the condition as an element of damage, most claims appear to be motivated by financial gain associated with litigation.  Raw data suggest that women are more likely to experience higher impact events, and are also more likely to develop PTSD than men. (See National Collaborating Centre for Mental Health (UK) (2005). Also see "Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Sec. 2: Incidence and Prevalence" and "Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: The Management of PTSD in Adults and Children in Primary and Secondary Care". NICE Clinical Guidelines, No. 26. Gaskell (Royal College of Psychiatrists). Raw data collected over many years confirms that children are less likely to experience PTSD after trauma than adults.

Most commonly afflicted with PTSD are combat veterans who are exposed to war. According to Stéphane Audoin-Rouzeau and Annette Becker, "One-tenth of mobilized American men were hospitalized for mental disturbances between 1942 and 1945, and, after thirty-five days of uninterrupted combat, 98% of them manifested psychiatric disturbances in varying degrees."  See World War One- A New Kind of War/ Understanding the Great War: Part II pp. 14-18 by Stéphane Audoin-Rouzeau, Annette Becker. The term post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) became common terminology in the 1970s.  Mental health formally recognized the diagnosis in 1980. The term was formally recognized world wide as a diagnosis in 1980.  (See When Trauma Tips You Over:  PTSD Part1, All in the Mind. Australian Broadcasting Commission. 9 October 2004).  Fortunately, most veterans get over PTSD.  VIDEO LINK.

Recently, it has been opined that family member of loved ones who die suddenly may exhibit PTSD type symptoms. While sudden death of a loved one may cause emotional distress, unless the victim is exposed to the actual trauma then the diagnosis of PTSD should not be given.  Furthermore, in such cases involving litigation, the the impact requirements of most states will bar compensation for the alleged symptoms.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Feeling a little stressed. Maybe my last interaction with my ex did me in?