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Archive for Tuesday, January 2, 2007

War trauma may lead to future heart disease

January 2, 2007

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— A study of 1,946 male veterans of World War II and Korea suggests that vets with symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder are at greater risk of heart attacks as they age.

The new study is the first to document a link between PTSD symptoms and future heart disease, and joins existing evidence that vets with PTSD also have more autoimmune diseases such as arthritis and psoriasis.

"The burden of war may be even greater than people think," said the first study's lead author, Laura Kubzansky of the Harvard School of Public Health, who studies anxiety, depression and anger as risk factors for heart disease. Her work, with colleagues from Harvard and Boston University, appears in Monday's Archives of General Psychiatry.

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