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Journal of Traumatic Stress

, Volume 9, Issue 3, pp 497–519 | Cite as

Attention, arousal, and memory in posttraumatic stress disorder

  • Brett T. Litz
  • Frank W. Weathers
  • Valerie Monaco
  • Debra S. Herman
  • Michael Wulfsohn
  • Brian Marx
  • Terence M. Keane
Regular Articles
  • 152 Downloads

Abstract

Vietnam combat veterans with current posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), with other Axis-I disorders, or with no Axis-I disorders completed a series of tasks designed to elucidate the psychophysiological parameters of information-processing in PTSD. These tasks included a modified Stroop procedure (MSP), a standard Stroop procedure, a recognition memory task, and a threat rating task. Physiological responses were recorded throughout the study. Our data supported several predictions derived from information-processing models of PTSD. PTSD subjects exhibited greater MSP interference to high threat words than both comparison groups, and a liberal response bias toward recognizing military-related words. PTSD symptoms and threat reactions contributed to MSP interference effects for high-threat words after controlling for medications, depression, and baseline physiological activity.

Key words

PTSD Stroop memory arousal 

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Copyright information

© International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Brett T. Litz
    • 1
    • 2
  • Frank W. Weathers
    • 1
    • 2
  • Valerie Monaco
    • 1
    • 2
  • Debra S. Herman
    • 1
    • 2
  • Michael Wulfsohn
    • 1
    • 2
  • Brian Marx
    • 1
    • 2
  • Terence M. Keane
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.National Center for PTSDBoston Department of Veterans Affairs Medical CenterBoston
  2. 2.Tufts University School of MedicineMedford

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