Revista Brasileira de Psiquiatria
Print version ISSN 1516-4446
CAMARA FILHO, José Waldo S and SOUGEY, Everton B. Post-traumatic stress disorder: diagnostic formulation and comorbidity issues. Rev. Bras. Psiquiatr. [online]. 2001, vol.23, n.4, pp. 221-228. ISSN 1516-4446. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1516-44462001000400009.
OBJECTIVES: To update the main aspects of the clinical presentation and diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder and to discuss its validity as a nosological entity and its comorbidity. METHODS: It was carried out a description of the clinical symptomatology, focusing on its phenomenological significance and literature review on comorbidity and diagnostic validation. RESULTS: The clinical manifestations of PTSD can be divided into three symptomatological groups according to traumatic reexperience, avoidance and numbing, and psychic arousal. Growing evidence derived from a number of epidemiological and neurobiological studies has confirmed the PTSD diagnostic structure, especially the construct's validity. The presence of comorbid disorders in about 80% of the cases draws attention to the diagnosis formulation, whether the diagnostic criteria are imprecise, allowing the superimposition of other disorders' symptoms, and contributing to an overestimation of comorbid prevalence. CONCLUSION: PTSD is considered a valid diagnosis, as long as it also recognizes and legitimates the clinical condition, which is not necessarily temporary, derived from the psychological trauma.
Keywords : Stress disorders; post-traumatic; Anxiety disorders; Diagnosis.