(HealthDay News) – Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms are common in patients recovering from acute lung injury (ALI), according to a study published online March 5 in Psychological Medicine.

O. Joseph Bienvenu, MD, from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, and colleagues recruited patients from 13 intensive care units (ICUs) in four hospitals, with follow-up at 3, 6, 12, and 24 months after ALI onset. Impact of Events Scale Revised mean score was assessed, with scores of ≥1.6 defined as PTSD symptoms.

The researchers found that 66 of 186 patients (35%) had PTSD symptoms, with the greatest prevalence by the three-month follow-up. Of patients with post-ALI PTSD symptoms, 56 survived to the 24-month follow-up, and 35 (62%) of these had PTSD symptoms at the 24-month follow-up, 50% had taken psychiatric medications, and 40% had seen a psychiatrist since hospital discharge. Factors affecting PTSD symptoms were pre-ALI depression, ICU length of stay, proportion of ICU days with sepsis, high ICU opiate doses, and proportion of ICU days on opiates or corticosteroids.

“PTSD symptoms are common, long-lasting, and associated with psychiatric treatment during the first two years after ALI,” write the authors.

Full Text (subscription or payment may be required)