Increased cortisol concentrations in hair of severely traumatized Ugandan individuals with PTSD

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2011
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Steudte, Susann
Stalder, Tobias
Kirschbaum, Clemens
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Zusammenfassung

Previous research has mostly suggested general hypocortisolism in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). However, PTSD is a complex disorder and opposite neuroendocrinological changes have also been reported. Amongst other things, heterogeneous results might be related to differences in sample characteristics as well as methodological factors associated with the assessment of cortisol. The current study used the novel method of hair cortisol analysis to examine cumulative long-term cortisol secretion in a severely traumatized PTSD sample. Hair samples of 10 traumatized individuals with PTSD and 17 traumatized controls without PTSD from a civil war area of Northern Uganda were analyzed. Results revealed that hair samples of PTSD participants contained higher cortisol levels than those of traumatized controls (p < .05). Furthermore, a positive association between hair cortisol levels and the number of lifetime traumatic events was found (p < .05). The current hair cortisol findings suggest that PTSD in severely traumatized individuals who continue to live under stressful conditions might be associated with general hypercortisolism. Future research examining participants after traumatic events at different follow-up periods is needed to determine the specific influence of time interval since traumatization.

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150 Psychologie
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Posttraumatic stress disorder, cortisol, hair, biological markers, traumatic events
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ISO 690STEUDTE, Susann, Iris-Tatjana KOLASSA, Tobias STALDER, Anett PFEIFFER, Clemens KIRSCHBAUM, Thomas ELBERT, 2011. Increased cortisol concentrations in hair of severely traumatized Ugandan individuals with PTSD. In: Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2011, 36(8), pp. 1193-1200. ISSN 0306-4530. eISSN 1873-3360. Available under: doi: 10.1016/j.psyneuen.2011.02.012
BibTex
@article{Steudte2011-09Incre-16260,
  year={2011},
  doi={10.1016/j.psyneuen.2011.02.012},
  title={Increased cortisol concentrations in hair of severely traumatized Ugandan individuals with PTSD},
  number={8},
  volume={36},
  issn={0306-4530},
  journal={Psychoneuroendocrinology},
  pages={1193--1200},
  author={Steudte, Susann and Kolassa, Iris-Tatjana and Stalder, Tobias and Pfeiffer, Anett and Kirschbaum, Clemens and Elbert, Thomas}
}
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