Prevalence and Risk Factors for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Symptoms Among National Guard/Reserve Component Service Members Deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan

  • Melissa A. PolusnyEmail author
  • Meredith A. Martyr
  • Christopher R. Erbes
  • Paul A. Arbisi
  • Mark Kramer
  • Elizabeth Gibson
  • Heather Oleson
Reference work entry


Over the past decade, the USA has relied on unprecedented deployments of National Guard and Reserve Component service members to support sustained military operations in Afghanistan and Iraq. In this chapter, we review the empirical literature on the prevalence of PTSD among service members following deployment to Iraq and Afghanistan. Methodological issues to be considered when evaluating prevalence estimates across studies are reviewed, and the results of meta-analyses comparing PTSD prevalence rates for reserve and active components are critically examined. Finally, we summarize findings from the literature on risk and protective factors associated with PTSD that might account for the heightened risk of PTSD among Reservists during the post-deployment reintegration period.


Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) Military Combat Prevalence Epidemiology Risk factors National Guard Military Reservist Iraq Afghanistan 

List of Abbreviations


Brigade combat team


Department of Defense


Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th edition


National Guard/Reserve


Operation Enduring Freedom


Operation Iraqi Freedom


Operation New Dawn


PTSD Checklist


Primary Care PTSD Screen


Post-Deployment Health Assessment


Post-Deployment Health Reassessment


Post-traumatic stress disorder


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland (outside the USA) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Melissa A. Polusny
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    Email author
  • Meredith A. Martyr
    • 1
    • 4
  • Christopher R. Erbes
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Paul A. Arbisi
    • 1
    • 3
    • 5
  • Mark Kramer
    • 1
    • 3
  • Elizabeth Gibson
    • 1
    • 3
  • Heather Oleson
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.Minneapolis VA Health Care SystemMinneapolisUSA
  2. 2.Center for Chronic Disease Outcomes ResearchMinneapolisUSA
  3. 3.Department of PsychiatryUniversity of Minnesota Medical SchoolMinneapolisUSA
  4. 4.Department of Educational PsychologyUniversity of Minnesota – Twin CitiesMinneapolisUSA
  5. 5.Department of PsychologyUniversity of Minnesota – Twin CitiesMinneapolisUSA

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