Bessel A. van der Kolk

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BACKGROUND Previous studies have used symptom provocation and positron emission tomography to delineate the brain systems that mediate various anxiety states. Using an analogous approach, the goal of this study was to measure regional cerebral blood flow changes associated with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms. METHODS Eight patients with(More)
Since trauma arises from an inescapable stressful event that overwhelms people's coping mechanisms, it is uncertain to what degree the results of laboratory studies of ordinary events are relevant to the understanding of traumatic memories. This paper reviews the literature on differences between recollections of stressful and of traumatic events. It then(More)
Exposure to multiple traumas, particularly in childhood, has been proposed to result in a complex of symptoms that includes posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as well as a constrained, but variable group of symptoms that highlight self-regulatory disturbances. The relationship between accumulated exposure to different types of traumatic events and total(More)
OBJECTIVE Clinical reports suggest that many adults who engage in self-destructive behavior have childhood histories of trauma and disrupted parental care. This study explored the relations between childhood trauma, disrupted attachment, and self-destruction, using both historical and prospective data. METHOD Seventy-four subjects with personality(More)
Two hundred thirty four participants in the DSM-IV Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Field Trial who reported sexual and/or physical abuse were evaluated. Participants were categorized according to type of abuse (physical, sexual, both), duration of abuse (acute versus chronic), and onset of abuse (early versus late). Separate logistic regression(More)
Ever since people's responses to overwhelming experiences have been systematically explored, researchers have noted that a trauma is stored in somatic memory and expressed as changes in the biological stress response. Intense emotions at the time of the trauma initiate the long-term conditional responses to reminders of the event, which are associated both(More)
We tested the hypothesis that exposure to a stimulus resembling the original traumatic event would induce naloxone-reversible analgesia in patients with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Eight medication-free Vietnam veterans with PTSD and eight veterans without PTSD, matched for age and combat severity, viewed a 15-minute videotape of dramatized combat(More)
BACKGROUND Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a common illness associated with significant disability. Few large, placebo-controlled trials have been reported. METHODS Outpatients with a DSM-III-R diagnosis of moderate-to-severe PTSD were randomized to 12 weeks of double-blind treatment with either sertraline (N = 100) in flexible daily doses in the(More)
OBJECTIVE A century of clinical research has noted a range of trauma-related psychological problems that are not captured in the DSM-IV framework of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). This study investigated the relationships between exposure to extreme stress, the emergence of PTSD, and symptoms traditionally associated with "hysteria," which can be(More)
Children and adults exposed to chronic interpersonal trauma consistently demonstrate psychological disturbances that are not captured in the posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) diagnosis. The DSM-IV (American Psychiatric Association, 1994) Field Trial studied 400 treatment-seeking traumatized individuals and 128 community residents and found that victims(More)