Diagnosing and Treating PTSD

Discussion in 'Professionally Qualified, RAMC and QARANC' started by ABrighter2006, Dec 1, 2006.

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  1. Interested to know views in relation to PTSD.

    Firstly, would somebody confirm that the sooner diagnosis is made, the length of treatment is likely to be shorter - or, is this not the case?

    The follow-up is, how long does PTSD take to treat?

    I understand that there must be wide variations between different cases, but natural distribution would probably say that 90% of sufferers take between x and y months to treat effectively, and I just wondered what x and y equalled.
  2. For the length of treatment to be shorter the earlier the diagnosis is made would mean, that all treatment could be measured as an equal. I don't believe this to be the case.

    Some take ages others less...
  3. Cheers for that me n bee, so if I'm getting this right... Early diagnosis doesn't necessarily mean a quicker recovery period?

    Take the point about not being able to measure all treatment as equal, but there must be some "average" numbers that result from the number of people suffering from PTSD that have undergone treatment?
  4. It depends on the trauma experienced and make up of the individual concerned. Early intervention can assist recovery or at least reduce signs of PTSD to a degree where the sufferer can come to terms with the condition with reduced symptomology. It is usually a long hard slog.
  5. Most clinicians would say that early intervention is better. Prolonged PTSD can lead to problems that further complicate the matter, such as alcoholism and changes in underlying personality. This tends to lengthen and complicate treatment.

    Common sense would suggest therefore that early PTSD requires shorter treatment. I'm not sure however that the scientific literature clearly demonstrates it. Individual factors e.g. personality and pre-existing problems e.g. alcohol problems (sadly very common in service personnel) will play a part. As a rule of thumb though, I'd have to say it's probably true.
  6. Abrighter2006 - anything treated early is better then treating it late, especially when you have a valid diagnosis.

    My PTSD was triggered by an accident at work - it took 3 months to diagnose and I am still in treatment 19 months later. It gets better but will always remain a part of you.

    But hey, who wants to be one of them that just have normal problems MUAHAHAHAHA ;)
  7. ABrighter - I've PM'd you.
  8. Thanks for your various inputs, I posted this further to reading a few articles, the most recent in today's Metro newspaper relating to the 7th July bombings and was trying to establish just how long these things take to recover from.

    I understand completely that pre-existing conditions, as referred by Neuroplectic, play a huge part, and that there is no DS solution. I also feel that in certain respects PTSD is something of a taboo subject, and that outside of those either suffering or treating the condition, little is known.

    Fully acknowledge the sterling work of organisations like Combat Stress, and hope that the thread will give readers a better understanding of the length of time it takes to treat, etc.
  9. Goatman

    Goatman LE Book Reviewer

  10. Was a rather sad article in the press about 5 years ago that I used in a few presentations. An decorated old chap who'd obviously done something rather brave and sneaky beaky in WWII had heard a noise at night on the shared balcony outside the flat he lived in. He was having a flashback at the time and thought this noise was a German who was about to find his position, so he got a kitchen knife and stabbed the 'German'.

    In fact the 'German' was his 86 year old female neighbour and he killed her. Can't remember what they did about sentence but I'm sure I recall the judge being very miserable about the whole thing. This chap had no previous criminal record. A truly horrible story.

    Just goes to show that it can still cause problems 60 years after the fact.
  11. Early treatment=shorter treatment=better outcome in PTSD?

    Not sure that there is a simple analysis. As already posted, pre-trauma variables are important, I.Q., gender, previous trauma, pre-morbid personality, previous psychiatric disorder. Trauma variables are also important, intensity duration, cognitive state . Also shame, blame, guilt, anger, and also post-trauma stuff, social support, co-morbidity, the presence of physical injury, alcohol use, personal style etc.... the list goes on and on.

    When all of these factors are taken into account it all looks quite complex and in some ways defies a proper analysis.

    I suppose that the type of treatment is important too, CBT, medication, EMDR, all have different modes of action and timeframes.

    I have seen some evidence that early treatment is best, so long as it is proper treatment delivered by a properly trained therapist.

    How confusing!!