USA Today - Modern Wars Influence Psychiatric Thought

 – February 29, 2012  –– 

Psychiatrists studying the feelings of guilt or shame associated with close combat say the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are influencing changes in the "bible" of psychiatry in the USA. The section of the American Psychiatric Association's manual for diagnosing mental illnesses that outlines the diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder — an illness afflicting 15 to 20 percent of returning combat veterans — is being expanded to include symptoms of persistent and recurring guilt or shame. Neuroscientist Dr. Rachel Yehuda, a professor at Mount Sinai School of Medicine who does extensive research with combat veterans, says the new criteria for PTSD can reduce stigma about seeking care. "What sometimes happens is that people miss the diagnosis because (patients) don't have one or two symptoms that are not listed," Dr. Yehuda says.
- Dr. Rachel Yehuda, Professor, Psychiatry, Neuroscience, Director of the Traumatic Stress Studies Division, Mount Sinai School of Medicine
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