- May 19, 2014
Science Daily/American Thoracic Society (ATS)
Patients who have survived a stay in the intensive care unit (ICU) have a greatly increased risk of developing symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), according to a new study. “An ICU stay can be traumatic for both patients and their families,” said one investigator. “In our analysis of more than 3,400 ICU patients, we found that one quarter of ICU survivors exhibited symptoms of PTSD.”
“An ICU stay can be traumatic for both patients and their families,” said Ann M. Parker, MD, a Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine fellow at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland. “In our analysis of more than 3,400 ICU patients, we found that one quarter of ICU survivors exhibited symptoms of PTSD.” The systematic review of 28 studies involved a total of 3,428 adult ICU survivors. Evaluation included testing with validated PTSD instruments, most commonly the Impact of Events Scale (IES, score range 0-75), administered one month or more after the ICU stay.
“Our meta-analysis confirms that a large proportion of patients who survive an ICU stay will suffer PTSD symptoms, which are associated with worse health-related quality of life,” said Thiti Sricharoenchai, MD, Instructor in the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at Thammasat University, Thailand who conducted this study as a post-doctoral research fellow at Johns Hopkins University. “Further research should focus on PTSD screening, prevention, and treatment in this vulnerable patient population.”