Document Detail

Amygdala Volume in Combat-Exposed Veterans With and Without Posttraumatic Stress Disorder: A Cross-sectional Study.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  23026958     Owner:  NLM     Status:  In-Data-Review    
CONTEXT Data from animal models demonstrate a link between stress exposure and hypertrophic changes in the amygdala; however, studies of adults with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) have failed to find analogous structural alterations. OBJECTIVES To compare amygdala volumes between a sample of combat veterans with and without PTSD (analysis 1) and examine whether our observation of larger amygdala volume in individuals with PTSD could be accounted for by the presence of trauma exposure in childhood and the severity of combat exposure in adulthood (analysis 2). DESIGN Cross-sectional magnetic resonance imaging. SETTING Veterans Affairs Palo Alto Health Care System Inpatient Trauma Recovery Program and Veterans Affairs New England Health Care System Outpatient PTSD program. PARTICIPANTS Ninety-nine combat-exposed veterans from the Vietnam Conflict or the Persian Gulf War who had been exposed to substantial military operational stress. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES Amygdala volume adjusted for total cerebral volume, Life Events Checklist, and the Combat Exposure Scale. RESULTS Analysis 1 indicated that combat-exposed individuals with PTSD exhibited larger total amygdala volume compared with their non-PTSD counterparts (99 individuals, P = .047). Analysis 2 indicated that greater severity of combat exposure (87 individuals, P = .02), as well as the interaction between the presence of early life trauma and the severity of combat exposure (87 individuals, P = .008), were significantly associated with smaller total amygdala volume. The PTSD diagnosis continued to explain larger amygdala volume (87 individuals, P = .006). CONCLUSIONS Posttraumatic stress disorder is associated with enlarged amygdala volume, above the variance accounted for by a history of early life trauma and severity of adult trauma exposure. The discrepancy between our and prior findings may be explained by variability in these trauma indices in previous investigations. These findings support additional study of amygdala structure in human stress disorders and further delineation of the role of early and adult trauma on associated neurologic changes.
Janice R Kuo; Danny G Kaloupek; Steven H Woodward
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Archives of general psychiatry     Volume:  69     ISSN:  1538-3636     ISO Abbreviation:  Arch. Gen. Psychiatry     Publication Date:  2012 Oct 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2012-10-02     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0372435     Medline TA:  Arch Gen Psychiatry     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  1080-6     Citation Subset:  AIM; IM    
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