Reporting John Ostapkovich
By John Ostapkovich
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - Post-traumatic Stress Disorder, or PTSD, is the hell of war that follows you home and a former Navy doctor’s book looks at the ailment, from the inside.
Dr. John Parrish can give you a medical description of PTSD.
“It’s a rewiring of parts of the brain that learn to process dangerous conditions and the person thinks, inappropriately, that they’re in a dangerous position either all the time or after certain triggers,” says Dr. Parrish.
But Dr. Parrish, author of Autopsy of War, knows from personal experience how it nearly destroyed his life, until he admitted he had a problem and got treatment.
The Pentagon has been late to the party recognizing the ailment.
“What’s gotten the Department of Defense’s attention to try to quickly do something about it is the alarming increase in suicide rates,” explains Dr. Parrish.
Dr. Parrish says it takes one to two years to make a civilian into a soldier and the reverse transformation needs some work, too.