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date: 14 December 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter reviews how fear-conditioning models of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) have been bolstered by our growing understanding of neurocircuitry involving the amygdala, hippocampus, and prefrontal cortex. It describes the reexperiencing, avoidant/numbing, and hyperarousal symptom clusters as well as other PTSD diagnostic criteria with specific reference to DSM-IV's changes in the A (A1 and A2) stressor criterion. Associated symptoms (e.g., danger to self or others, intolerance of ongoing stressors, capacity to acquire social support, and risk of reactivation and relapse) are briefly discussed. Longitudinal course, comorbidity, epidemiology, risk factors, and cross-cultural issues are also addressed. Other posttraumatic syndromes described include acute stress disorder, partial/subsyndromal PTSD, and complex PTSD. Finally, clinical issues in assessment are considered.

Keywords: A criterion, acute stress disorder, avoidant symptoms, clinical issues, epidemiology, flashback, hyperarousal symptoms, numbing symptoms, altered neurocircuitry, PTSD diagnostic criteria, posttraumatic syndromes, psychological models, risk factors, trauma

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