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Smucker, Mervin (2012)A neuroscience perspective on posttraumatic              stress disorder.                           ...
Neuroscience Research• Brain localization of differential  emotional reactions to trauma• How PTSD emotions are differenti...
Three Key Components of the Brain                            involved in PTSD               • Amygdala                    ...
Limbic         Structures          (Amygdala)Involved in the processing of           FEAR
Higher             Cortical            StructuresInvolved in the processing of more   complex negative emotions      (e.g....
Hippocampus Highlights• The hippocampus contextualizes fear  and regulates it on the basis of the  situation we are in (i....
Reduced hippocampal volume may be related     to memory dysfunction in PTSD               Vermetten & Bremner, 2002
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Mervin Smucker 2012 - Neuroscience Perspective On PTSD

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Mervin Smucker (2012). A neuroscience perspective on posttraumatic stress disorder.

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Mervin Smucker 2012 - Neuroscience Perspective On PTSD

  1. 1. Smucker, Mervin (2012)A neuroscience perspective on posttraumatic stress disorder. 1
  2. 2. Neuroscience Research• Brain localization of differential emotional reactions to trauma• How PTSD emotions are differentially represented and changed in the amygdala and the cortex
  3. 3. Three Key Components of the Brain involved in PTSD • Amygdala – PET imaging shows high amygdala activation to traumatic vs. neutral stimuli 1-4 • Prefrontal cortex – LESS activation 9-12 • Hippocampus – Reduced hippocampal volumes 5-81 Rauch et al., 1996; 2 Rauch et al., 2000; 3 Liberzon et al., 1999; 4 Semple et al., 2000; 5 Bremner et al., 1995; 6 Bremner et al., 1997; 7 Gurvitz etal., 1996; 8 Stein et al., 1997; 9 Bremner et al, 1999; 10 Bremner et al., 1999; 11 Villareal and King, 2001; 12 Pitman et al., 2001
  4. 4. Limbic Structures (Amygdala)Involved in the processing of FEAR
  5. 5. Higher Cortical StructuresInvolved in the processing of more complex negative emotions (e.g. guilt, shame, anger)
  6. 6. Hippocampus Highlights• The hippocampus contextualizes fear and regulates it on the basis of the situation we are in (i.e. a lion in the zoo fascinates; a lion on the street invokes fear)
  7. 7. Reduced hippocampal volume may be related to memory dysfunction in PTSD Vermetten & Bremner, 2002

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