PTSD - Calling the bluffs

#41
The neurological manifestations of trauma: lessons from World War I

Excerpts from an interesting paper which reviewed the records of 100 German WW1 psychiatric unit admissions using, where possible, modern psychiatric criterion and classification. Caveat here is these were acute admissions as opposed to PTSD as we define it today as is explained further down in bold.

Of note;

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"In the Berlin case records, we did not find evidence of post-traumatic syndromes as defined by the current diagnostic manuals. However, a small group of soldiers relived their traumatic combat experiences in dream-like dissociative states, mainly when waking up from a nightmare revolving around their war deployment..... Very few soldiers had outbursts of anxiety or aggression, hypervigilance and hyperarousal. The relative rarity of this type of stress reaction and its differences from present-day PTSD support Jones’s theory that similar traumatic triggers can have different phenomenological consequences in different cultural settings "

Here is the Jones paper if anyone wants a look.

Post-combat syndromes from the Boer war to the Gulf war: a cluster analysis of their nature and attribution
 

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#42
Funnily enough i was thinking about this during this cave rescue, it occurred to me that those whom do such sports like cave diving, TT racing or base jumping don't seem to be known to run off to the doctors hyperventilating or beat up their wives then blame it on their own self inflicted ptsd,..we can be sure that none of these civvie divers are likely to be beating up the pub landlord then using it as an excuse. To me its plain as the nose on your face that some folk are lying and most others are just not cut out for danger.


As an aside i used to drink with a guy whom was tasked by British Rail to travel at a moments notice anywhere in the south east to shovel suicide victims off train tracks,....he developed a drinking habit and eventually killed himself by hanging, he never raised a hand or his voice to anyone.


Bottom line is squaddies need to take a look at other terrible jobs like firefighters, coppers, mortuary workers even social service workers (who have kids murdered on their watch) none of these have a habit of breaking the law or living on the tax payer and standing behind ptsd as the cause.
 
#43
Post Trauma, define trauma then work from there.
But it’s not the trauma that’s the issue, or which needs defining- it is post traumatic stress. This seems more difficult to prove, disprove or pin down. I have heard that it is possible for a walter mitty character to suffer from genuine PTSD as a result of his fabricated and imagined acts of derring do.

Imagine how popular such a creature would be in the group therapy.
 
#44
Funnily enough i was thinking about this during this cave rescue, it occurred to me that those whom do such sports like cave diving, TT racing or base jumping don't seem to be known to run off to the doctors hyperventilating or beat up their wives then blame it on their own self inflicted ptsd,..we can be sure that none of these civvie divers are likely to be beating up the pub landlord then using it as an excuse. To me its plain as the nose on your face that some folk are lying and most others are just not cut out for danger.


As an aside i used to drink with a guy whom was tasked by British Rail to travel at a moments notice anywhere in the south east to shovel suicide victims of train tracks,....he developed a drinking habit and eventually killed himself by hanging.


Bottom line is squaddies need to take a look at other terrible jobs like firefighters, coppers, mortuary workers even social service workers (who have kids murdered on their watch) none of these have a habit of breaking the law or living on the tax payer and standing behind ptsd as the cause.
I often wonder the same about pathologists tasked with kids.
 
#46
I often wonder the same about pathologists tasked with kids.
Pathologists in general, imagine turning up for work in the morning after the drive or cycle in, opening up the freezer and seeing someone who was doing exactly the same thing!
 
#47
As if by magic:

None unless PROPERLY evidenced and clearly relevant to the crime and/or sentence.

Yes, one of many cards played.

Cards rarely work and often piss off the bench. The vast, vast majority of offenders have some form of life issues: MH, crap upbringing, addictions, brain injuries. Or all of the above unfortunately.

I can vouch for the above; the following is deliberately vague for persec.

Some time ago I had a bloke working for me who was a weapons-grade drinker; a bottle of vodka at a sitting wasn't unusual for him. Within weeks of joining my unit he'd been done by the civpol for drink-driving, military disciplinary procedures for pitching up to work drunk, and so the slide began.

Then, one morning - BOOM; he discovered - or so he thought - the Willy-Wonka-Golden-Ticket. Every third word out of his mouth for months afterwards was "PTSD-this, PTSD-that". Unfortunately for him, medics, military personnel admin staff and the civpol / prosecuting authorities are well versed in what are realistic and credible symptoms of PTSD, as opposed to some bluffer trying to use the condition to concoct an excuse for their behaviour.

In the end, he left the military as an admin case and is now, I believe, a gentleman-of-the-road in his home town in the North East. So, no, just saying "PTSD" doesn't cut it, despite some people thinking it's an easy case to bluff.
 
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#48
Where does that leave vicarious PTSD suffered by clinicians? Does it matter what sort of cases the clinician dealt with?
 
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#49
Bottom line is squaddies need to take a look at other terrible jobs like firefighters, coppers, mortuary workers even social service workers (who have kids murdered on their watch) none of these have a habit of breaking the law or living on the tax payer and standing behind ptsd as the cause.
I have no real wish to get into a debate about the ‘deservedness’ of suffering from PTSD.

However of those professions you have mentioned - how many of them have realistically gone through the trauma that an infanteer when through on an average Herrick. People (mostly very young uneducated people) were being asked to go out and kill on a daily basis. During the course of that they were operating in a totally hostile environment - thousands of miles from home, poor diet, poor sleep, physical degradation. They were involved in traumatic acts - friends, not strangers, killed in front of them in horrific ways (have you ever seen your best mate blown in two and had to barma to his torso to have to try and save him? Had him bleed to death all over you as you wait for casevac whilst a contact rages around you?) - enemy fighters ripped apart by your bullets, or 30mm. Worse - seeing CIVCAS caused by you either directly or indirectly.

And then after the traumatic episode it’s likely the rest of your day involved cleaning your weapon, stagging on and interrupted sleep until the next day when you did it all again day after day for six months.

Plenty of firefighters, police, social workers etc face traumatic episodes - but I struggle to believe that the sustained level of it is comparable.
 
#50
You shouldn't be able to bluff PTSD. You wouldn't if enough resources and training were put into the mental,health system
Resources or not. PTSD is very difficult to diagnose. I apparently have a General Anxiety disorder. I was upset as I wanted PTSD.

Mental health issues are surprisingly difficult to diagnose as theres a huge amount of cross over between different types.

PTSD may be triggered by many things, but it’s synotoms are a cross between depression and anxiety. However generally, somebody who who has depression has anxiety and depression and somebody who has depression has anxiety.

The diagnosis can be a bit hit and miss. I got out of the PTSD diagnosis as I emphasises I thought I’d suffered from anxiety before I joined but after several years of getting shot at it got worse. Had I gone in hard with the I’ve had several years of getting shot at I’d have been diagnosed with PTSD.

I agree PTSD had many triggers, but diagnosing it over none traumatic experiences (I.e non blowing up, death, destruction and living hell etc etc) demeans it a bit.
 

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#51
There was a girl at Phoenix House who'd been diagnosed with PTSD because she'd signed off some people as "Medically Fit To Deploy" (or whatever it's called) to Afghanistan, and they'd been injured. I seriously don't know what to think about that.
That she's a ******* pussy.
 
#53
I remember both articles and they were derided by many, often by those who have no comprehension of the seriousness of people with exaggerated claims and the damage it does to genuine sufferers..
Would you mind expanding on this as it came up recently in a conversation about a colleague .
 
#56
I have found that GPs are very eager to jump on the "do you think you have PTSD?" wagon as soon as they hear you are ex-mob.

18 months ago I presented myself at my new GPs (had relocated 'oop north') due to feeling tired all the time.
The symptoms I had experienced, when asked about, ticked almost every box from depression to pregnancy.
Turned out my immune system was having a bit of a feud with my liver. The GP first went down the PTSD questioning route though. I'm guessing it ticks boxes.

As to PTSD - I never stared down an ironsight and blatted anybody. Nor did I witness an oppo be turned into pink mist. I did see lots of 'aftermath' though. At the time it didn't bother me at all. Now, as a father, I often cross-reference certain memories with my kids and the age they are at now.
I don't have PTSD, I believe a few "wires" have been connected in my head the years since SL etc though. I can see how it would be VERY easy for someone to walt as a PTSD sufferer - given that the NHS appear very eager to diagnose it.
 
#57
A good friend who also lost his legs in an explosion once said to me:

We probably have PTSD, but we don’t suffer from it”
 
#58
Good thread and if there are bluffers, they get genuine cases a bad name. I don't have the right to judge, or to get bitter and twisted, or to call anybody fake. I'm not qualified. An open mind till we know either way, sounds fair and grown up. But I'd suggest that calling the bluffs equally applies to all the quack outfits purporting to have expertise with, and treating, PTSD, which unfortunately for genuine sufferers has almost become a trope. And there's been a fair few cowboys, umpteen 'charities', and rogue providers of crash courses in 'CBT'. Criticism on here of military mental health services might be justified or they might not be. However, I can remember opinions of military and civilian mental health teams; they weren't good. Working for TRBL I've known one or two decent clinicians. I've known community mental health teams that were sodding useless.

This stuff has been discussed time and time again and there's a couple of things still worth remembering: when you've stood in front of somebody who's had a traumatic experience and they're suffering the effects, badly: you'll know. You can see it. Also when someone is functioning normally and the triggers kick in: you can see it. I dunno and I'm no Doctor or Nurse, but I'd think it'd be hard to fake a long term life changing disability caused by mind injuries. Especially those one or two that I can remember. IME, sexual abuse has sod all to do with military shellshock/PTSD/injured minds. And whatever we call PTSD, might be invisible to our eyes and we're not able to diagnose in any case. Genuine cases, and those diagnosed with whatever PTSD really is, still deserve support and respect. Fakers should be found out.
 
#59
I'm sure I've mentioned this before at some point, and I think it is relevant:

The RN has (or at least used to) have what was colloquially referred to the "basket weaving course". Held in the naafi at HMS Nelson. A three day or a five dayer...depending on the perceived seriousness of alcohol dependency.
In the late nineties, the RN suffered a few blows to PR regarding equality etc and decided to throw the baby out with the bathwater - on the ship I was on at least this translated to - anyone done for anything where alcohol was deemed to have played a part was sent on the "weaving course".

It led to this:

"I am Chief Petty officer Bloggs my daughter was killed in a car accident last year, and my wife has just left me and took my son with her..and I resorted to alcohol...that is why I am here..."

"I am Leading Seaman Dooberry-Scrinson, My whole family died in a housefire last year and I resorted to alcohol, that is why I am here..."

"I am LOM Flipflop...I went out on a Thursday night, had a bit too much to drink and was 5 minutes adrift for the both watches muster on the flightdeck - that is why I am here...".
 
#60
Funnily enough i was thinking about this during this cave rescue, it occurred to me that those whom do such sports like cave diving, TT racing or base jumping don't seem to be known to run off to the doctors hyperventilating
Apart from when they do.
 

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