NORFOLK, VA—Pre-traumatic stress disorder, a future-combat-related psychological condition previously thought to afflict only young soldiers drafted against their will, is now found in growing numbers among National Guard members, Army, Navy, Marine, and Air Force reservists, semi-retired officers, and the newly recruited, according to a government study released Monday.
"When soldiers are put in the extreme situation of facing the possibility of large-scale death and shocking violence, many experience sleeplessness and outbursts of anger," said Walter Reed Army Hospital psychologist Capt. Sidney Mullenthauer. "We're seeing more victims experience vivid, ultra-realistic flash-forwards of roadside bombings that tear through a group of innocent children, or rocket attacks on their convoys that leave fellow soldiers charred and smoldering."
The study, conducted by the Department Of Future Veterans Affairs, found that 80 percent of part-time soldiers reported no signs of Pre-TSD while carrying out their obligatory one weekend of duty a month, but quickly developed severe symptoms upon receiving orders for active combat.
In addition, a significant number of those who will enter a war zone say they are plagued by repeated visions of atrocities, torture, and the CNN logo.