Brain Scans Help Shed Light on the Ptsd Brain, but They Cannot Diagnose PTSD

“Although we do not use brain scans to diagnose PTSD in the clinic, we use them to understand what happens in the PTSD brain. There is abundant evidence for changes in the structure and function of different areas of the brain involved in fear response and anxiety, regulation of emotions, cognitive processing and memory. For example, there is consistent evidence for reduced volume in the brain region called the hippocampus, which is involved in memory and context processing. This leads to difficulties differentiating cues that resemble trauma, such as the slamming of a door, from the trauma cue itself, such as a gunshot.”

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