The role of post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms in fatigued Cambodia veterans.
SourceMilitary Medicine, 167, 9, (2002), pp. 790-794
Article / Letter to editor
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SubjectThe role of cytokines in the pathophysiology of febrile illnesses and in host defense against infections; Psychological antecedents; De rol van cytokinen in de pathofysiologie van koortsende ziekten en in de afweer tegen infecties; Psychologische determinanten
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is sometimes put forward as an explanation for unexplained somatic symptoms in military personnel who have been deployed in war or peace missions. Using a cross-sectional postal survey, we investigated whether PTSD symptoms can account for fatigue in Dutch (ex-)servicemen who returned from the peace operation United Nations Transitional Authority for Cambodia and what features distinguish veterans with and without presumptive PTSD diagnoses. Increased PTSD scores were found in 1.3% of 1,698 veterans. There was no concordance between increased PTSD scores and fatigue, as defined in previous studies. Respondents with presumptive PTSD had more often left service, had more often been exposed to severe and potentially traumatic events, and more often reported a greater impact of the mission. Furthermore, they reported more mental problems that they perceived to be service related and they held a stronger causal attribution to post-traumatic stress. In conclusion, presumptive PTSD cannot offer an explanation for fatigue in Cambodia veterans.
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