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Flashcards in PTSD Deck (12):

What are the most common symptoms of PTSD?

After being exposed to a threat or serious injury.
- Intrusions -- event is re-experienced in recollections or dreams after being exposed to cues
- Avoidance -- efforts to avoid distressing memories and avoid reminders of the activity
- Avoidance (seperated) -- unable to recall details or aspect of the trauma
- Hyperarousal -- persistent symptoms of increased arousal and alterations in reactivity to stimuli


What are the anatomical areas of dysfunction in the CNS of PTSD?

- Amygdala -- over activation to normal nonthreatening stimuli
- Hippocampus -- reduced hippocampal volumes
- Prefrontal Cortex -- LESS activation


How is processing different in amygdala vs cortical?

Amygdala -- takes in sensory input and can illicit immediate sympathetic response if it cues a threatening memory


What is the hippocampus' role in PTSD?

-- contextualizes fear and puts it in context, which is the dysfunctional part in PTSD


How is the prefrontal cortex and amygdala regulated together?

They are inversely related.
-- When the PFC is activated the Amygdala is inactive and when the Amygdala is active the PFC is inactive.
-- PFC is generally used for decision making and executive processing, so when its off, non-contextual fear can be illicited.


Why can PTSD patient not typically remember details of their events and experiences?

Traumatic memories must be accessed in a state of similar emotional arousal. Memories are State Dependent.


What are methods to elicit behavioral deconditioning?

- Flooding -- (Implosive Therapy) when they relive the experience and re-expose talking through it
- Systemic Desensitization - slowly re-exposing the patient to stimuli to help overcome their negative response and anxiety.


What pathways do the various types of therapies target for PTSD?

Talk Therapy -- Prefrontal Cortex control, indirect Amygdala
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy -- PFC and direct amygdala
Drug Therapy -- Directly Amygdala + rest of brain


What is the most effective therapy for PTSD?

Cognitive Behavioral Therapies
- Stress innoculation training
- Rescripting and Reprocessing the event
- Cognitive Reconstruction
- Prolonged exposure


What might be symptoms to notice in a patient after they had a traumatic experience to be concerned for PTSD (even if they don't mention anything)

- Difficulties with concentration
- Sleep disturbances
- Increased startle response
- Irritability
- Change in mood / appetite


What are questions that can be asked as a screening tool for PTSD?

- Experienced any vivid thoughts about the injury?
- Are you able to return to the place of the accident or injury?
- What do you think can be done to prevent the injury?


What is the difference between Acute Stress disorder and PTSD?

Acute Stress Disorder -- usually only lasts less than 4 weeks
PTSD -- Has been present for more than 1 week