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Br J Gen Pract. 2007 Oct;57(543):808-10.

Prevalence of post-traumatic stress disorder in patients with previous myocardial infarction consulting in general practice.

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Respiratory Research Unit, Peninsula Medical School, Plymouth.


Reported prevalence of myocardial infarction-related post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) varies from 0 to 25%. PTSD after myocardial infarction may affect quality of life, cardiovascular outcomes, and health service usage. Of 164 patients with previous myocardial infarction, 111 participated in the study and 36 had PTSD, giving a prevalence of 32%; the lowest possible estimate being 22%. PTSD was associated with significantly worse general health than that of individuals without PTSD. Prevalence of PTSD did not vary with time since myocardial infarction. PTSD was not associated with adverse risk factors for future myocardial infarction, such as smoking, high blood pressure, and poor compliance with medication. PTSD after myocardial infarction may be a common, persistent, and overlooked cause of psychological morbidity.

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