Brain responses to symptom provocation and trauma-related short-term memory recall in coal mining accident survivors with acute severe PTSD.Brain Res. 2007 May 04; 1144:165-74.BR
Functional neuroimaging studies have largely been performed in patients with longstanding chronic posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Additionally, memory function of PTSD patients has been proved to be impaired. We sought to characterize the brain responses of patients with acute PTSD and implemented a trauma-related short-term memory recall paradigm. Individuals with acute severe PTSD (n=10) resulting from a mining accident and 7 men exposed to the mining accident without PTSD underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) while performing the symptom provocation and trauma-related short-term memory recall paradigms. During symptom provocation paradigm, PTSD subjects showed diminished responses in right anterior cingulate gyrus, left inferior frontal gyrus and bilateral middle frontal gyrus and enhanced left parahippocampal gyrus response compared with controls. During the short-term memory recall paradigm, PTSD group showed diminished responses in right inferior frontal gyrus, right middle frontal and left middle occipital gyrus in comparison with controls. PTSD group exhibited diminished right parahippocampal gyrus response during the memory recall task as compared to the symptom provocation task. Our findings suggest that neurophysiological alterations and memory performance deficit have developed in acute severe PTSD.