Department of Psychiatry

Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Resources

PTSD is an anxiety disorder that has its onset following exposure to a traumatic event. A traumatic event is defined by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition (DSM-IV) as an event that is experienced or witnessed that was severe enough to risk actual or threatened death, serious injury or threat to the integrity of self or others. Examples of traumatic events include natural disasters, automobile accidents, rape, kidnapping, and torture. The response to the event must include the experience of intense fear, helplessness or horror. Symptoms include intrusive re-experiencing of the event (intense memories, nightmares, flashbacks), avoidance of persons or situations associated with the event, intense emotional and physical reactions upon exposure to situations or memories of the event, and symptoms of hyperarousal including sleep problems, irritability, difficulty concentrating and hypervigilance. Effective medical and psychotherapy treatments have been developed to reduce the duration and intensity of PTSD symptoms. Early recognition and treatment appear to improve rates of response and recovery in a condition that can develop a chronic course without intervention.

The websites offered here are selected as starting points for clinicians, patients and loved ones to learn more about PTSD, research in the field and the best practices in treatment and support for those affected by the disorder.

We hope you will find this site a helpful gateway to the world of information about PTSD available on the internet.