PTSD Prevalent Among COVID-19 Patients, Though Less Than Seen in Previous Epidemics
12/09/2020

JCP published a study assessing PTSD in patients with COVID-19. The study included outpatients, hospitalized patients, and those requiring an ICU stay.

Online PR News – 09-December-2020 – Memphis – The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry published a longitudinal study assessing PTSD in patients diagnosed with COVID-19. Negative effects on mental health, resulting from the uncertainty and the fear of a poorly understood disease as well as drastic physical distancing and quarantine measures, have been reported in COVID-19 patients, but the traumatic impact of the illness is unknown.

To learn more about the prevalence of PTSD in patients with COVID-19 infection and identify possible predictive or protective factors, researchers at Lille University Hospital Center in France studied 180 patients with confirmed COVID-19 between March and May. Seventy percent were hospitalized, and just under a third were admitted to the ICU.

The authors did find that patients with COVID-19 are at risk of developing posttraumatic stress symptoms, with 6% of the patients meeting criteria for PTSD. Patients who developed PTSD tended to be those who experienced greater distress at onset of the illness or were admitted to an ICU. Interestingly, the researchers note that the prevalence of PTSD in the patients was not as high as that reported during the SARS and MERS epidemics but was close to rates typically seen after natural disasters. The authors emphasize the need for long-term monitoring and care for COVID-19 patients after recovery.

Access the entire report on the study, “Is COVID-19 Associated With Posttraumatic Stress Disorder?” by Mathilde Horn, MD, PhD, et al, at https://doi.org/10.4088/JCP.20m13641.

The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, a peer-reviewed publication that is indexed and abstracted by the National Library of Medicine, is the official publication of the American Society of Clinical Psychopharmacology and is among the top 10 most cited psychiatry journals.