Introduction: To assess the incidence of post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms in patients undergoing elective spine surgery.
Methods: A prospective cohort study of 91 patients undergoing elective spinal surgery was examined. The incidence of development of PTSD symptoms was evaluated using a structured clinical interview (SCID) and a battery of standardized questionnaires (STAI-S, STAI-T, ASI-3, PTSS-10, ADS-K, BSSS). The evaluation took place before surgery as well as 1 week, 1 month and 3 months postoperatively. Short form SF36, Oswestry Disability Index (ODI) and EuroQOL-3D were also completed preoperatively and 3 months postoperatively.
Results: 56 patients were male (61%); mean age was 55,3 years (range 21 -87 years). Most patients were married (68%). 25 patients (27%) had previous psychological treatment. PTSD symptoms were reported in 13 cases (14%) prior to surgery. At 1 and 3 months follow-up 8 and 6 patients (6%) still had PTSD symptoms, respectively.
Conclusions: Our results reveal that the genesis of PTSD symptoms is more likely to be related to preoperative incidents and not as currently believed to the operative procedure per se. Further research is needed in order to determine the relevant incident triggering the PTSD symptoms.
Psychological support is necessary for patients suffering from PTSD symptoms as we could observe a stabilisation of the symptoms at 3 months follow up.
Patient Care: By providing more information about the incidence and clinical impact of mental complication following elective spine surgery.
Learning Objectives: By the conclusion of this session, participants should be able to: 1) Describe the importance of identifying PTSD symptoms in patients undergoing elective spine surgery