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Journal Article


Gaylord KM, Holcomb JB, Zolezzi ME. J. Trauma 2009; 66(4): S191-5.


United States Army Institute of Surgical Research, Fort Sam Houston, Texas 78234-6315, USA.


(Copyright © 2009, Lippincott Williams and Wilkins)






BACKGROUND: Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has been identified in 12% to 20% of noninjured veterans and in 32% of combat casualties. Eight percent of the US general population experience PTSD symptoms, whereas 25.5% of civilians with major burns have PTSD. Known predictors of physical outcomes of patients with burn are age, total body surface area (TBSA) burned, and Injury Severity Score (ISS). The United States Army Institute of Surgical Research Burn Center provides burn care for combat casualties and civilians. We hypothesized that we would find no difference in PTSD incidence between these two populations and that age, TBSA, and ISS are associated with PTSD. METHOD: We retrospectively examined the clinical records of 1,792 patients admitted between October 2003 and May 2008. Records were stratified by PTSD, age, TBSA, and ISS. PTSD scores were compared. Descriptive analyses were used. RESULTS: Four hundred ninety-nine patients (372 military [74.5%]; 127 civilians [25.5%]) were assessed for PTSD using PTSD checklist military and civilian versions. PTSD was defined as >or=44 on the PTSD checklist instruments. We found no significant difference in PTSD between combat casualties and civilians (25% vs. 17.32%, p = 0.761). TBSA and ISS were significantly associated with PTSD; however, no association between age and PTSD was found. CONCLUSION: The incidence of PTSD is not significantly different in burned combat casualties and civilians treated at the same burn unit. These findings suggest that PTSD is related to the burn trauma and not to the circumstances surrounding the injury.

Language: en


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