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Brazilian Journal of Psychiatry

versão impressa ISSN 1516-4446versão On-line ISSN 1809-452X


DA SILVA, Herika C. et al. PTSD in mental health outpatient settings: highly prevalent and under-recognized. Braz. J. Psychiatry [online]. 2019, vol.41, n.3, pp.213-217.  Epub 11-Out-2018. ISSN 1809-452X.


To estimate the current prevalence of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and the diagnosis rate of this disorder ascertained by psychiatrists in training.


We interviewed 200 adults under treatment in a university mental health outpatient clinic. The PTSD diagnoses obtained using the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV (SCID-IV) were compared with the patients’ medical records.


Forty-one patients (20.5%) were diagnosed with current PTSD, but only one of them (2.4%) had previously received this diagnosis. This study confirms that although PTSD is highly prevalent among mental health outpatients, it is remarkably underdiagnosed in teaching hospitals.


These findings suggest that psychiatrists in training may be failing to investigate traumatic events and their consequences and strongly indicate that trauma-related issues should be given more prominence in psychiatry curricula and psychiatrist training.

Palavras-chave : Prevalence; PTSD; underdiagnosis; outpatient psychiatry.

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