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Association found between PTSD and myocardial ischemia

We’ve said it before in our Saint Louis Social Security Disability Law Blog; obtaining Social Security disability benefits involves much more than checking a box next to a disorder. Obtaining SSD benefits involves not only proving that one has a disability, but that it also affects their ability to work, which is why individuals often hire an attorney to help facilitate the process for them.

Post traumatic stress disorder affects a number of veterans, some of which return home to Missouri. A recent study found that PTSD is linked to myocardial ischemia, a cardiovascular disorder that is on the Social Security Administration’s listing of impairments.

The research study was called “Mind Your Heart Study.” There were 663 participants involved in the study. Each of these individuals was an outpatient at two Veterans Affairs Medical Centers and received treatment between the years 2008 and 2010.

In order to test for the presence of myocardial ischemia, the participants were asked to undergo treadmill testing. When the data was analyzed, it showed that of those that had been diagnosed with either full or partial PTSD, 17 percent had exhibited myocardial ischemia during testing. Of those that did not have PTSD, 10 percent exhibited signs of the cardiovascular disorder.

Even after the numbers were adjusted for a number of different factors, the statistical disparity between those with PTSD and those without remained.

Not all patients diagnosed with PTSD seek treatment, but researchers hope that understanding the negative impact that the symptoms of PTSD can have on overall health would help push those into treatment who may otherwise have forgone the option.

Source: Healio Cardiology, “PTSD linked to myocardial ischemia,” Turner JH, Dec. 15, 2013

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