Post-traumatic stress disorder: The neurobiological impact of psychological trauma

Jonathan E. Sherin, Charles Nemeroff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

226 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The classic fight-or-flight response to perceived threat is a reflexive nervous phenomenon thai has obvious survival advantages in evolutionary terms. However, the systems that organize the constellation of reflexive survival behaviors following exposure to perceived threat can under some circumstances become dysregulated in the process. Chronic dysregulation of these systems can lead to functional impairment in certain individuals who become "psychologically traumatized" and suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), A body of data accumulated over several decades has demonstrated neurobiological abnormalities in PTSD patients. Some of these findings offer insight into the pathophysiology of PTSD as well as the biological vulnerability of certain populations to develop PTSD, Several pathological features found in PTSD patients overlap with features found in patients with traumatic brain injury paralleling the shared signs and symptoms of these clinical syndromes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)263-278
Number of pages16
JournalDialogues in Clinical Neuroscience
Volume13
Issue number3
StatePublished - Dec 1 2011

Fingerprint

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorders
Survival
Signs and Symptoms
Psychological Trauma
Population

Keywords

  • Biological markers
  • Pathophysiology
  • Psychological trauma
  • Psychopathology
  • Ptsd
  • Stress
  • Traumatic brain injury

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry

Cite this

Post-traumatic stress disorder : The neurobiological impact of psychological trauma. / Sherin, Jonathan E.; Nemeroff, Charles.

In: Dialogues in Clinical Neuroscience, Vol. 13, No. 3, 01.12.2011, p. 263-278.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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