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Functional recovery is of the utmost importance to evaluate in our returning Operation Enduring and Iraqi Freedom veterans so that we can better understand their needs and experiences during the readjustment process from warzone to civilian life. Although most soldiers are resilient, concerning rates of PTSD (12-20%) and depression (14-15%) have been found, and as many as 24-35% report drinking more alcohol than they intended (Hoge et al., 2004). The current study proposes to follow returning veterans for a one-year period to evaluate factors that influence the readjustment process and functional impairment. This information should guide the development of early intervention and treatment programs to help readjustment.
The proposed longitudinal study aims to better understand the functioning of returning Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) and Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) OEF/OIF veterans over time and to identify potentially malleable resilience factors associated with higher levels of functioning. A total of 300 returning OEF/OIF veterans will be followed for a one-year period. Veterans will complete a baseline assessment, followed by three follow-up assessments (two self-report assessments mailed at 4- and 8-months post-baseline and a one-year in-person follow-up assessment that repeats many of the baseline clinician-administered assessments). Multiple functional outcomes will be evaluated, including occupational, family, social, and physical functioning. The specific aims include: 1) identifying whether a "dose-response" relationship exists between level of exposure to stressors (pre-deployment, deployment-related, and post-deployment) and functioning over time; 2) examining whether potentially malleable resilience factors predict higher levels of functioning in returning veterans over time; 3) examining whether psychopathology predicts lower levels of functioning in returning veterans over time; 4) testing the theoretical model that psychopathology partially mediates the effects of stress, social support, coping, and neurocognition on functioning over time; 5) examining whether changes in the use of healthy coping strategies, social support, post-deployment stress, and psychopathology predict changes in functioning over time; and 6) exploring whether stress, social support, coping, neurocognition, and psychopathology have differential effects on specific aspects of functioning (e.g., occupational, family, social, and physical functioning) over time. The long-term aim of this research is to develop evidence-based early intervention and treatment programs designed to assist returning OEF/OIF veterans with achieving optimal functioning when reintegrating into civilian life. In keeping with the VHA's goal of operationalizing principles of recovery and rehabilitation in treatment planning, this research should provide a platform of empirical data to assist with the further development of meaningful early intervention and treatment programs to assist OEF/OIF veterans with the post-war readjustment process over time.
Observational Model: Cohort, Time Perspective: Prospective
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorders
Central Texas Veterans Health Care System - Waco
Not yet recruiting
Department of Veterans Affairs
Published on BioPortfolio: 2014-08-27T03:13:40-0400
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A class of traumatic stress disorders that is characterized by the significant dissociative states seen immediately after overwhelming trauma. By definition it cannot last longer than 1 month, if it persists, a diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder (STRESS DISORDERS, POST-TRAUMATIC) is more appropriate.
A class of traumatic stress disorders with symptoms that last more than one month. There are various forms of post-traumatic stress disorder, depending on the time of onset and the duration of these stress symptoms. In the acute form, the duration of the symptoms is between 1 to 3 months. In the chronic form, symptoms last more than 3 months. With delayed onset, symptoms develop more than 6 months after the traumatic event.
Anxiety disorders manifested by the development of characteristic symptoms following a psychologically traumatic event that is outside the normal range of usual human experience. Symptoms include re-experiencing the traumatic event, increased arousal, and numbing of responsiveness to or reduced involvement with the external world. Traumatic stress disorders can be further classified by the time of onset and the duration of these symptoms.
Syndromes which feature DYSKINESIAS as a cardinal manifestation of the disease process. Included in this category are degenerative, hereditary, post-infectious, medication-induced, post-inflammatory, and post-traumatic conditions.
Dyssomnias (i.e., insomnias or hypersomnias) associated with dysfunction of internal sleep mechanisms or secondary to a sleep-related medical disorder (e.g., sleep apnea, post-traumatic sleep disorders, etc.). (From Thorpy, Sleep Disorders Medicine, 1994, p187)
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