Abstract

While the clinical communities are aware of the prevalence of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among OEF/OIF/OND veterans, further efforts are necessary to bolster comprehensive strategies for assessment and treatment. The purpose of this study was to investigate whether a combat-related PTSD symptom provocation paradigm would elicit unique neurological responses via functional near-infrared spectroscopy across three groups – combat veterans with PTSD, combat veterans without PTSD, and nonmilitary participants without PTSD. Results indicated that combat veterans with PTSD demonstrated significant activation during exposure to a trauma-related sound compared to nonmilitary personnel at channels 14 (d = 1.03) and 15 (d = 1.30) and combat veterans without PTSD at channel 14 (d = 0.87). Specifically, this increased neural activation was approximately located in the right superior/medial prefrontal cortex (BA 9/10), associated with evaluating cue-familiarity and emotional detachment. Results were less clear with respect to a combat-related odor. These results suggest a specific neurophysiological response to trauma-related cues and if replicated, may offer a biomarker for combat-related PTSD. Such a response could provide incremental validity over diagnostic assessments alone and assist in planning and monitoring of treatment outcome.

Graduation Date

2017

Semester

Spring

Advisor

Neer, Sandra

Degree

Master of Science (M.S.)

College

College of Sciences

Department

Psychology

Degree Program

Psychology Clinical

Format

application/pdf

Identifier

CFE0006596

URL

http://purl.fcla.edu/fcla/etd/CFE0006596

Language

English

Release Date

May 2017

Length of Campus-only Access

None

Access Status

Masters Thesis (Open Access)

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