PTSD Combat is no longer being updated.

Find Ilona blogging at Magyar Etimológia and Etymartist.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Studies: Veterans and Alcohol, PTSD's Effect on the Heart, Tuberculosis Drug Shows Promise in Reshaping Traumatic Memories

  • Arriving today in the Journal of the American Medical Association, the article Alcohol Use and Alcohol-Related Problems Before and After Military Combat Deployment delivers the results of "one of the first major studies to emerge from the Pentagon's landmark 'Millennium' study, launched in 2001." According to Carla K. Johnson of AP, "researchers analyzed data from nearly 80,000 military personnel, including more than 11,000 who were sent to Iraq and Afghanistan," and found that 26 percent (>600 of 2,400) of troops who reported no binge drinking prior to the study "developed the problem after deployment and combat exposure." Guard and Reserve troops had a 60 percent higher rate of developing "[n]ew patterns of regular heavy drinking and alcohol problems."

  • In the July/August 2008 issue of Psychosomatic Medicine, A Prospective Study of PTSD and Early-Age Heart Disease Mortality Among Vietnam Veterans reports that having PTSD "significantly raises the risk of premature death from heart disease...[being] roughly twice as likely to die from heart disease during follow up as veterans without PTSD." Reuters' Megan Rauscher quotes the study's chief researcher, Dr. Joseph Boscarino, saying that the work "confirms that PTSD is a major cause of heart disease." He said the effect PTSD has on the body is the same as "smoking two to three packs of cigarettes per day for more than 20 years."

  • A five-year Emory University study sponsored by the National Institute of Mental Health is looking at an antibiotic, "a 50-year-old tuberculosis drug called D-cycloserine, or DCS," as a possible treatment for anxiety and PTSD. Eric Hagerman of Popular Science reports that "veterans with PTSD take the drug or a placebo, don a virtual-reality helmet, and re-create their worst nightmares...[while a] therapist guides them safely through the traumatic memory." The drug, which has shown promise in treating obsessive-compulsive disorder and phobias like fear of heights, works on the brain's amygdala by allowing the traumatic memory to be "reshaped" or lessened. Clinical trials are ongoing.

Related Posts

Blog Widget by LinkWithin
Want to stay connected? You can subscribe to PTSD Combat via Feedburner or follow Ilona on Twitter.
Later/Newer Posts Previous/Older Posts Return Home

2011: Jan Feb
2010: Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sept Oct Nov Dec
2009: Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sept Oct Nov Dec
2008: Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sept Oct Nov Dec
2007: Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sept Oct Nov Dec
2006: Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sept Oct Nov Dec
2005: Sept Oct Nov Dec

Legal Notice

The information presented on this web site is based on news reports, medical and government documents, and personal analysis. It does NOT represent therapeutic prescription or recommendation. For specific advice and information, consult your health care provider.

Comments at PTSD Combat do not necessarily represent the editor's views. Illegal or inappropriate material will be removed when brought to our attention. The existence of such does not reflect an endorsement.

This site contains at times large portions of copyrighted material not specifically authorized by the copyright owner. This material is used for educational purposes, to forward understanding of issues that concern veterans and military families. In accordance with U.S. Copyright Law Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit. More information.