UA Psychiatry Chief To Lecture On Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Jean Spinelli
April 3, 2001

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, or PTSD, is a psychiatric disorder that can occur following the experience or witnessing of life-threatening events such as military combat, natural disasters, terrorist incidents, serious accidents, or violent personal assaults like rape. People who suffer from PTSD often relive the experience through nightmares and flashbacks, have difficulty sleeping, and feel detached or estranged, and these symptoms can be severe enough and last long enough to significantly impair the person's daily life.

PTSD is complicated by the fact that it frequently occurs in conjunction with related disorders such as depression, substance abuse, problems of memory and cognition, and other problems of physical and mental health. The disorder is also associated with impairment of the person's ability to function in social or family life, including occupational instability, marital problems and divorces, family discord, and difficulties in parenting.

Dr. Alan Gelenberg, professor and head of the psychiatry department in the University of Arizona College of Medicine, will spend the evening talking about PTSD. Dr. Gelenberg is editor-in-chief of the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry and founding author of the monthly newsletter Biological Therapies in Psychiatry. He earned the 1997 Exemplary Psychiatrist Award from the National Association for the Mentally Ill and he has been listed in Best Doctors in America. Before joining the UA, Gelenberg taught at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital. He graduated from Columbia University in New York and has a medical degree from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.




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