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Co-Occurring PTSD, Depression in Cohort of Marines

Psychiatry Res; ePub 2017 Nov 1; Barnes, et al

Despite shared method variance and some symptom overlap, self-reports of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression symptoms across a stressful combat deployment show distinct symptom sub-clusters rather than a general common trauma reaction, according to a recent study. Researchers sought to investigate the distinctiveness of PTSD and depression symptoms at 4 cross-sectional time points, using data from a parent prospective longitudinal study of 858 Marines evaluated before deployment and approximately 1, 5, and 8 months after returning from the Afghanistan war. They found:

  • Analyses indicated that across all 4 assessments, self-reported symptoms on the measures were best explained by distinct but correlated sub-clusters of symptoms within each measure.
  • This structure was supported by the data both before and after deployment, even with increases in average PTSD symptoms after deployment.

Citation:

Barnes JB, Hayes AM, Contractor AA, Nash WP, Litz BT. The structure of co-occurring PTSD and depression symptoms in a cohort of Marines pre- and post-deployment. [Published online ahead of print November 1, 2017]. Psychiatry Res. doi:10.1016/j.psychres.2017.10.045.

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