Preliminary Findings of the Relationship of Lower Heart Rate Variability with Military Sexual Trauma and Presumed Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

Elizabeth A.D. Lee, Joe K. Bissett, Michael A. Carter, Patricia A. Cowan, Jeffrey M. Pyne, Patricia M. Speck, Sue A. Theus, Elizabeth Tolley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

9 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Decreased heart rate variability (HRV) occurs with physical and psychological disorders and is a predictor of cardiac and all-cause mortality. This study was the first of which we are aware to examine and report the relationship between military sexual trauma (MST) and HRV measures. In a historical cohort study of female veterans with (n = 27) and without (n = 99) MST who received Holter and electrocardiogram evaluation at a Veteran Affairs medical center during 2007-2010, we examined the relationship between MST and the standard deviation of all R-R intervals (SDNN) and the square root of the mean of the sum of the squares of differences between adjacent R-R intervals (RMSSD). Female veterans with MST were younger, p = .002, frequently had a probable posttraumatic stress disorder diagnosis, 80% versus 15%, p = < .0001, and had lower SDNN, p = .0001, and RMSSD, p = .001, than those without MST. The SDNN and RMSSD of a 25-year-old female veteran with MST were comparable to that of female veterans aged 69 to 81 years without MST. Further research is needed to evaluate relationships between MST and HRV measures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)249-256
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Traumatic Stress
Volume26
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2013

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Post-Traumatic Stress Disorders
Heart Rate
Veterans
Wounds and Injuries
Electrocardiography
Cohort Studies
Psychology
Mortality
Research

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

Cite this

Preliminary Findings of the Relationship of Lower Heart Rate Variability with Military Sexual Trauma and Presumed Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. / Lee, Elizabeth A.D.; Bissett, Joe K.; Carter, Michael A.; Cowan, Patricia A.; Pyne, Jeffrey M.; Speck, Patricia M.; Theus, Sue A.; Tolley, Elizabeth.

In: Journal of Traumatic Stress, Vol. 26, No. 2, 01.04.2013, p. 249-256.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Lee, Elizabeth A.D. ; Bissett, Joe K. ; Carter, Michael A. ; Cowan, Patricia A. ; Pyne, Jeffrey M. ; Speck, Patricia M. ; Theus, Sue A. ; Tolley, Elizabeth. / Preliminary Findings of the Relationship of Lower Heart Rate Variability with Military Sexual Trauma and Presumed Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. In: Journal of Traumatic Stress. 2013 ; Vol. 26, No. 2. pp. 249-256.
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