A new study that looked at Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in pairs of twins who served in the Vietnam era found that the twin with PTSD had double the risk of heart attack. While not specifically linking PTSD to heart disease, the study does indicate that PTSD has long-term physical effects that need to be studied further.
The study tracked subjects over a 13 year period and also included nuclear imaging of the heart. This imaging showed decreased blood flow to the heart which can contribute to heart disease, stroke and heart attack. At present, PTSD may affect as many as 5.2 million U.S. adults.
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Image courtesy of ptsdlove.blogspot.com.