Trauma, PTSD and CVD
Women who suffer traumatic events or develop posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are at increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease (CVD), according to new data from a long-running study of US nurses.
“PTSD is not exclusively a psychological problem but also increases risk of chronic disease,” lead author Jennifer A. Sumner, PhD, of Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, in New York City, told Medscape Medical News.
“Stress has long been thought to increase risk of cardiovascular disease, and PTSD is the quintessential stress-related mental disorder,” Dr Sumner commented. “PTSD is twice as common in women as in men; approximately 1 in 10 women will develop PTSD in their lifetime. Research has begun to suggest that rates of cardiovascular disease are higher in people with PTSD. However, almost all research has been done in men. Our study is the first to look at trauma exposure and PTSD symptoms and new cases of CVD in a general population sample of women,” she said.
Emotions have a significant impact on the heart, especially for women. This is another example of the mind-body connection.
If you have experienced trauma, or currently experience stress, anxiety or depression, please seek emotional help. By doing so, you help your mind and your body.
(Medscape Medical News – Psychiatry – Megan Brooks