Anger, hostility, and aggression among Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans reporting PTSD and subthreshold PTSD

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Abstract

Iraq and Afghanistan War veterans were grouped by level of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptomatology and compared on self-report measures of trait anger, hostility, and aggression. Veterans who screened positive for PTSD reported significantly greater anger and hostility than those in the subthreshold-PTSD and non-PTSD groups. Veterans in the subthreshold-PTSD group reported significantly greater anger and hostility than those in the non-PTSD group. The PTSD and subthreshold-PTSD groups did not differ with respect to aggression, though both groups were significantly more likely to have endorsed aggression than the non-PTSD group. These findings suggest that providers should screen for anger and aggression among Iraq and Afghanistan War veterans who exhibit symptoms of PTSD and incorporate relevant anger treatments into early intervention strategies.

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