For the many that are afflicted with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), there’s no secret as to its debilitating effect on an individual’s ability to handle small issues such as a news story that may prove to be sad or upsetting or dealing with a noisy neighbor. Recent research in a published study, appearing in Circulation, the journal of the American Heart Association, indicates that those issues may be the least of things for women to be concerned about. The study contends that women with PTSD may have an increased probability of stroke and heart attack.
The study, conducted at the Mailman School of Public Health of Columbia University, in New York City, had researchers assessing the Nurse’s Health Study II, a 20 year evaluation of young women, in which 55,000 women participated. At the conclusion of the study, the participants completed a survey of the traumatic events they had experienced, such as, an assault or a disaster such as a hurricane, flood or blizzard and if they endured any PTSD as a result of the occurrence.
According to Brian Torchin in this article, researchers theorize that women with PTSD had an elevated probability of heart disease, which could be attributed to their lifestyles, which included smoking and a sedentary posture. Data revealed that women that endured trauma and demonstrated four PTSD symptoms had a 60% likelihood of having a stroke or heart attack.