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J Clin Psychol Med Settings. 2013 Jun;20(2):240-6. doi: 10.1007/s10880-012-9323-2.

Prevalence and significant determinants of post-traumatic stress disorder in a large sample of patients with multiple sclerosis.

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Department of Mental Health, San Luigi Gonzaga Hospital Medical School, University of Turin, ASL TO3, Regione Gonzole 10, 10043, Orbassano, TO, Italy.


Chronic and life-threatening neurodegenerative diseases may be associated with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Therefore, the current study was an investigation of the prevalence of PTSD in multiple sclerosis (MS) patients, and identification of significant determinants of PTSD. Two hundred thirty-two MS patients were consecutively recruited and screened for the presence of PTSD with the Impact of Event Scale-Revised, corroborated by the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV. Furthermore, participants were administered the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale and the Fatigue Severity Scale. Twelve patients (12/232, i.e. 5.17 %) were diagnosed as suffering from PTSD. Levels of education, anxiety and depression were significant determinants of the presence of PTSD. The role played by the levels of education, anxiety and depression in determining the presence of PTSD has been discussed. Further research on the psychological features of neurodegenerative diseases is urgently needed in order to plan appropriate treatments and improve patients' quality of life.

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