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Posttraumatic Stress Disorder: Treatment

Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a disorder that is characterized by exposure to actual or threatened death; serious injury or sexual violence, and subsequent presence of intrusion symptoms (e.g., nightmares or flashbacks); persistent avoidance of trauma reminders; negative alterations in cognitions and mood (including overly negative self-perception or inability to trust others); and marked alterations in arousal and reactivity (e.g., angry outbursts, exaggerated startle, sleep disturbance). Previously conceptualized as an anxiety disorder, it has been classified in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), as a trauma- and stressor-related disorder. Lifetime risk for PTSD in the United States is 8.7%, and the diagnosis carries with it increased risk for suicide, severe social and occupational disability, and high comorbidity with other ...

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