Navy Net - Royal Navy Community

Register a free account today to become a member! Once signed in, you'll be able to participate on this site by adding your own topics and posts, as well as connect with other members through your own private inbox!

PTSD New Research published in BMJ

According to BBC Online today (3 August 07) the British Medical Journal (BMJ) have reported that British troops are, on average, serving 20% longer than they are supposed to, increasing the risk of them developing PTSD.

The details of the paper in the BMJ are given below:

Mental health consequences of overstretch in the UK armed forces: first phase of a cohort study

Roberto J RONA, et al.

published: 30 July 2007

available gratis (in PDF) via:


Objective To assess the relation between frequency and duration of deployment of UK armed forces personnel on mental health.
Design First phase of a cohort study.

Setting UK armed forces personnel.

Participants Operational history in past three years of a randomly chosen stratified sample of 5547 regulars with experience of deployment.

Main outcome measures Psychological distress (general health questionnaire-12), caseness for post-traumatic stress disorder, physical symptoms, and alcohol use (alcohol use disorders identification test).

Results Personnel who were deployed for 13 months or more in the past three years were more likely to fulfil the criteria for post-traumatic stress disorder (odds ratio 1.55, 95% confidence interval 1.07 to 2.32), show caseness on the general health questionnaire (1.35, 1.10 to 1.63), and have multiple physical symptoms (1.49, 1.19 to 1.87). A significant association was found between duration of deployment and severe alcohol problems. Exposure to combat partly accounted for these associations. The associations between number of deployments in the past three years and mental disorders were less consistent than those related to duration of deployment. Post-traumatic stress disorder was also associated with a mismatch between expectations about the duration of deployment and the reality.

Conclusions A clear and explicit policy on the duration of each deployment of armed forces personnel may reduce the risk of post-traumatic stress disorder. An association was found between deployment for more than a year in the past three years and mental health that might be explained by exposure to combat.

What is already known on this topic

UK armed forces are being deployed more often than previously, so called overstretch

To allow objective monitoring the UK armed forces have recommended maximum deployment levels, called harmony guidelines

What this study adds

Duration of deployment above established guidelines is associated with more mental health problems

Combat exposure, type of deployment, and problems at home partly account for these associations

An association was found between expectation that duration of most recent deployment would be shorter than it actually was and post-traumatic stress disorder


Sad that peoples mental health is put at risk by not being able to tell people when they can go home. But i think its covering up the fact that alot of guys are getting ptstd due to what have they seen and not really being prepared(if you can be prepared) for some of the sights they deal with. Maybe the Army have a long way to go in dealing with mental health issues the Navy seem better.


I have no desire to appear flippant regarding this issue but you do wonder how they ever coped during 1914-18 and 1939-45?


I understand what you mean but i do not think todays guys are as well set mentally for the situations. I mean inthe old days alot of the guys would have had manual jobs and felt responsible compare this to your 19 year old finding himself used to mum and playstation joining up to find himself out in Iraq with loaded rifle away from luxury. He is out his depth he only joined up to get some money meet some friends as the brochure tells you. Suddenly he is getting shot at and seeing stuff and he starts wishing he was in a playstation game. PTSTD did exist years ago its a human response to extreme situations and i would never wish it on anyone.
finknottle said:
I have no desire to appear flippant regarding this issue but you do wonder how they ever coped during 1914-18 and 1939-45?

Many suffered long-term psychological affects but in those far off days it wasn't discussed as it is today. My ex-G Spot relative who survived being a Japanese POW could never discuss his experiences as a POW (or at the G Spot). However he was still horribly thin when he died in his 80s! He woke up literally "re-living" his wartime experiences. Today his condition would be called PTSD.

PS: Is that a pint glass you are offering, of Krug? (Licking lips)


War Hero
finknottle said:
I have no desire to appear flippant regarding this issue but you do wonder how they ever coped during 1914-18 and 1939-45?

In the 1st WW you were classed as "lacking in Moral fiber" and as such shot."Shell Shock" wasnt looked on as a bona fide disease untill quite late.In the 2nd WW however it was recognised that the longer a serviceman was exposed to the horrors of War, the greater the chances of Mental Health issues.To that end the UK troops spent considerably less time in the Front line than their US counterparts. So really this report is nothing new!


I have no desire to appear flippant regarding this issue but you do wonder how they ever coped during 1914-18 and 1939-45?

I am a Military Mental Health Nurse. While doing my training in the 1990s in Scotland I had the honour to meet quite a few WWII veterans (particularly FEPOWs) who were still suffering the psychological after effects some 50 years later. It even rings bells that a family had just got in touch with an elderly uncle who had been admitted to a psychiatric unit in the 1920s following his WWI experiences and had never been spoken of again. Imagine finding a 90ish year old uncle / greatuncle who nobody knew about.

Just because the signs and symptoms of PTSD were not talked about doesn't mean that people didn't have to live with them every day.

I think we are actually lucky to live in an age where mental health has less of a stigma than it did then.
Thread starter Similar threads Forum Replies Date
MoD_RSS Press release: James Brokenshire prioritises social houses for former servicemen and women with PTSD MoD News 0
SONAR-BENDER PTSD, Depression etc Health & Fitness 0
T Ex Army - Diagnosed with PTSD Joining Up - Royal Navy Recruiting 11
stan_the_man Coping with PTSD Health & Fitness 13
I PTSD Therapy Dogs Current Affairs 5
Hitback PTSD awareness March Current Affairs 9
chockhead819 PTSD article in the Sun Current Affairs 1
O Ptsd and Drink Health & Fitness 146
D PTSD Health & Fitness 5
soleil BBC: PTSD: "Fighting the mental scars of war" Health & Fitness 0
K Independent on military PTSD again Current Affairs 1
D L/Cpl Beharry V.C. criticises NHS PTSD care The Gash Barge 60
stan_the_man BBC Radio 2 ptsd Falklands 82 History 0
C [b]Furthering the knowledge of PTSD Current Affairs 0
T More government promises broken to PTSD Veterans Current Affairs 0
SS-super-stoker PTSD and / or shell shock treatments - any good books? Health & Fitness 3
H Military PTSD - Effective Treatment by "PTSD Resolution" Current Affairs 8
Seaweed Combat Stress/PTSD Current Affairs 11
F Last Night on TV> PTSD as experienced by 3 past servicemen Current Affairs 4
A PTSD in soldiers linked to heart attacks in later years Current Affairs 6
MoD_RSS Ofsted research finds pupil motivation around remote education is a significant concern for parents and school leaders MoD News 0
MoD_RSS UK Research and Innovation funds research projects for COVID-19 in Peru MoD News 0
MoD_RSS New research will demonstrate benefit of culture and heritage to society MoD News 0
MoD_RSS £12M UK-Japan robotics deal for fusion energy and nuclear decommissioning research MoD News 0
Bad CO Assistance sought with alcohol research Health & Fitness 2
MoD_RSS £5 million research project supports the UK’s nuclear waste disposal programme MoD News 0
MoD_RSS First phase of research paves the way for further studies on microplastics pollution MoD News 0
MoD_RSS Veterans step up to support those in need during COVID pandemic, new research finds MoD News 0
MoD_RSS Clinical Research Organisation identified to lead bovine TB cattle vaccination field trials MoD News 0
MoD_RSS The National Archives adopts geospatial data research and development licence as a public sector standard MoD News 0
MoD_RSS Science Minister at the Universities UK Research and Innovation Conference MoD News 0
MoD_RSS Over half a million people taking part in pioneering COVID-19 research MoD News 0
MoD_RSS Call for additional research evidence: review of respiratory diseases and occupational exposures MoD News 0
MoD_RSS Research News at FCERM MoD News 0
MoD_RSS £20 million boost for world class AI research could transform cancer treatment and save lives MoD News 0
MoD_RSS FCERM research and development programme MoD News 0
MoD_RSS Research into the Sawtooth Effect published MoD News 0
MoD_RSS UK government commissions space solar power stations research MoD News 0
MoD_RSS £175 million more for cycling and walking as research shows public support MoD News 0
MoD_RSS New research reveals best investments to tackle learning crisis in vulnerable countries MoD News 0
MoD_RSS Offshore Windfarm development boosted by £2 million research MoD News 0
MoD_RSS Science Minister on ‘The Research Landscape’ MoD News 0
MoD_RSS The Annual Research and Development Review MoD News 0
MoD_RSS Charity regulator appoints interim manager to Islamic Research Foundation International MoD News 0
MoD_RSS UK Government invests in Covid research at St Andrews University MoD News 0
MoD_RSS UK Government to fund COVID-19 research in Scotland MoD News 0
MoD_RSS £500,000 funding for innovative research to diagnose TB in cattle faster MoD News 0
MoD_RSS ARSAC to launch online portal for research applications MoD News 0
MoD_RSS UK Government invests £150,000 in Scottish research projects to boost jobs and create skills MoD News 0
MoD_RSS The UK and TCELS to jointly support COVID-19 research in Thailand MoD News 0
Similar threads

Latest Threads

New Posts