The Prevalence of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Terence M. Keane, Walter E. Penk, Navah Haber-Schaim, Zahavah Solomon, Avraham Bleich, Moshe Kottler, John E. Helzer, Lee N. Robins

Research output: Contribution to journalLetterpeer-review


To the Editor: Helzer et al. (Dec. 24 issue)1 present the rates of prevalence of post-traumatic stress disorder in the St. Louis area of the Epidemiologic Catchment Area Survey. They reported those rates as 1 percent overall, 3.5 percent in people exposed to either a physical attack or combat, and 20 percent in combat veterans wounded in Vietnam. The authors concluded that post-traumatic stress disorder “exists but is uncommon except among wounded Vietnam veterans.” However, several points of contention must be addressed before their data can be accepted with confidence. First, a disorder that affects 1 percent of the population.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1690-1692
Number of pages3
JournalNew England Journal of Medicine
Issue number25
StatePublished - 23 Jun 1988
Externally publishedYes


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