New scientific evidence supports the concept of po...

Article Outline

In 2005 the author proposed the concept of post-traumatic mood disorder, he suggested that some or all individuals diagnosed with comorbid (PTSD) and depression have a separate psychobiological condition that can be termed “post-traumatic mood disorder” (PTMD). The idea was based on the fact that a lot of studies suggested that patients suffering from comorbid PTSD and depression differed clinically and biologically from individuals with PTSD alone or depression alone. He suggested that PTMD is associated with suicidal behavior, discussed possible psychobiological mechanisms of this association, and proposed a model of suicidal behavior in war veterans with PTMD. A epidemiological study that examined the association between PTSD and completed suicide in a large population-based sample has just been published (see Gradus, Posttraumatic Stress Disorder and completed suicide). This study found that the association between PTSD and completed suicide remained after controlling for psychiatric and demographic confounders. More importantly, the authors observed that persons with comorbid PTSD and depression had a greater rate of suicide than expected based on their independent effects. This study supports the idea that PTMD is a separate psychobiological condition, not simply a combination of PTSD and depression. This research report also suggests that PTMD is associated with completed suicide. In fact, this epidemiological study is the first considerable evidencethat PTMD is associated with completed suicide, not only with suicide attempts or suicideideations.

Author: Leo Sher
Doi: 10.1016/j.mehy.2010.03.026