Posttraumatic stress disorder-like symptoms 1 week to 3 months after myocardial infarction

  • Leonard A. Doerfler
Article

Abstract

In DSM-IV, the revised criteria for PTSD allow for “being exposed to a life-threatening illness,” to now meet the criterion of exposure to an extreme stressor. The present study examined psychosocial adjustment, particularly PTSD symptoms, in 45 cardiac patients 1 week to 3 months after they experienced their first MI. Identification of potential participants proceeded via review of records of patients on the coronary care unit at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center. The results indicated that most patients reported low levels of distress. Using Foa and co-workers’ (1993) PTSD Symptom Scale, 9% of the patients met DSM-III-R criteria for PTSD.

Key words

posttraumatic stress disorder myocardial infarction depression anxiety social support 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Alter, C. L., Pelcovitz, D., Axelrod, A., Goldenberg, B., Harris, H., Meyers, B., Grobois, B., Mandel, F., Septimus, A., and Kaplan, S. (1996). Identification of PTSD in cancer survivors.Psychosomatics 37: 137–143.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Blanchard, E. B., Hickling, E. J., Mitnick, N., Taylor, A. E., Loos, W. R., and Buckley, T. C. (1995). The impact of severity of physical injury and perception of life threat in the development of post-traumatic stress disorder in motor vehicle accident victims.Behav. Res. Ther. 33: 529–534.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Breslau, N., and Davis, G. C. (1987). Posttraumatic stress disorder: The stressor criterion.J. Nerv. Ment. Dis. 175: 255–264.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Cohen, S., and Wills, T. A. (1985). Stress, social support, and the buffering hypothesis.Psychol. Bull. 98: 310–357.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Cordova, M. J., Andrykowski, M. A., Kenady, D. E., McGrath, P. C., Sloan, D. A., and Redd, W. H. (1995). Frequency and correlates of posttraumatic-stress-disorder-like symptoms after treatment for breast cancer.J. Consult. Clin. Psychol. 63: 981–986.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Coyne, J. C., and Smith, D. A. F. (1991). Couples coping with a myocardial infarction: A contextual perspective on wives’ distress.J. Person. Soc. Psychol. 61: 404–412.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Doerfler, L. A., Pbert, L., and DeCosimo, D. (1994). Symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder following myocardial infarction and coronary artery bypass surgery.Gen. Hosp. Psychiatry 16: 193–199.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Foa, E. B., Riggs, D. S., Dancu, C. V., and Rothbaum, B. O. (1993). Reliability and validity of a brief instrument for assessing post-traumatic stress disorder.J. Traum. Stress 6: 459–473.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Frasure-Smith, N., Lesperance, F., and Talajic, M. (1995a). Depression and 18-month prognosis following myocardial infarction.Circulation 91: 999–1005.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. Frasure-Smith, N., Lesperance, F., and Talajic, M. (1995b). The impact of negative emotions on prognosis following myocardial infarction: Is it more than depression?Health Psychol. 14: 388–398.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Frederick, C. J. (1985). Selected foci in the spectrum of post-traumatic stress disorders. In Laube, J., and Murphy, S. A. (eds.),Perspectives on Disaster Recovery, Appleton-Century-Crofts, Norwalk, CT.Google Scholar
  12. Gotlib, I. H., and Cane, D. B. (1989). Self-report assessment of depression and anxiety. In Kendall, P. C., and Watson, D. (eds.),Anxiety and Depression: Distinctive and Overlapping Features, Academic Press, San Diego, CA, pp. 131–169.Google Scholar
  13. Horowitz, M. J., Wilner, N., and Alvarez, W. (1979). Impact of Event Scale.Psychosom. Med. 41: 209–218.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. Kushner, M. G., Riggs, D. S., Foa, E. B., and Miller, S. M. (1992). Perceived controllability and the development of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in crime victims.Behav. Res. Ther. 31: 105–110.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Kutz, I., Shabtai, H., Solomon, Z., Neumann, M., and David, D. (1994). Post-traumatic stress disorder in myocardial infarction patients: Prevalence study.Israeli J. Psychiatry Related Sci. 31: 48–56.Google Scholar
  16. March, J. S. (1993). What constitutes a stressor? The “criterion A” issue. In Davidson, J. R. R., and Foa, E. B. (eds.),Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. DSM-IV and Beyond, American Psychiatric Press, Washington, DC, pp. 37–54.Google Scholar
  17. Moos, R. H. (1982). Coping with acute health crises. In Millon, T., Green, C., and Meagher, R. (eds.),Handbook of Clinical Health Psychology, Plenum, New York, pp. 129–152.Google Scholar
  18. Procidano, M. E., and Heller, K. (1983). Measures of perceived social support from friends and family: Three validational studies.Am. J. Commun. Psychol. 11: 1–24.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Roca, R. P., Spence, R. J., and Munster, A. M. (1992). Posttraumatic adaptation and distress among adult burn victims.Am. J. Psychiatry 149: 1234–1238.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  20. Spielberger, C. D., Gorsuch, R. L., Luschene, R., and Vagg, P. R. (1983).Manual for the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (Form Y), Consulting Psychologists Press, Palo Alto, CA.Google Scholar
  21. Uddo, M., Allain, A. N., and Sutker, P. B. (1996). Assessment of posttraumatic stress disorder: A conceptual overview. In Miller, T. W. (ed.),Theory and Assessment of Stressful Life Events, International Universities Press, Madison, CT, pp. 181–207.Google Scholar
  22. Zimmerman, M., and Coryell, W. (1987). The inventory to diagnose depression (IDD): A self-report scale to diagnose major depressive disorder.J. Consult. Clin. Psychol. 55: 55–59.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Zimmerman, M., Coryell, W., Corenthal, C., and Wilson, S. (1986). A self-report scale to diagnose major depressive disorder.Arch. Gen. Psychiatry 43: 1076–1081.PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Leonard A. Doerfler
    • 1
  1. 1.Assumption College and Department of PsychiatryUniversity of Massachusetts Medical CenterUSA

Personalised recommendations