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Biol Psychiatry. 2003 Dec 15;54(12):1382-8.

Corticotropin-releasing factor in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) with secondary psychotic symptoms, nonpsychotic PTSD, and healthy control subjects.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry and Neurology, Tulane University School of Medicine, New Orleans, Louisiana 70112, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Recent studies have reported a high comorbidity between posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and psychotic symptoms, and it has been hypothesized that PTSD with comorbid psychosis is a severe form of PTSD. Few studies have examined the neurobiology of PTSD with comorbid psychosis. If PTSD with secondary psychotic symptoms (PTSD-SP) is a severe form of PTSD, then it might be expected to show more extreme perturbations in the neuroendocrine patterns that characterize PTSD.

METHODS:

Patients with PTSD with secondary psychotic symptoms (PTSD-SP), PTSD without psychosis, and healthy comparison subjects were compared for differences in cerebrospinal fluid concentrations of corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) and somatotropin-release-inhibiting hormone (SRIF).

RESULTS:

The PTSD-SP subjects had significantly higher mean levels of CRF than either the PTSD or control subjects (p <.01). The three groups showed similar SRIF levels.

CONCLUSIONS:

These data implicate abnormalities in the secretion of CRF with the production of secondary psychotic symptoms in PTSD. This finding supports the validity of PTSD-SP as a PTSD subtype and as a severe form of PTSD.

PMID:
14675802
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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