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Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Criteria

Jamie Marich, Ph.D., LPCC-S, LICDC-CS, RMT, edited by C. E. Zupanick, Psy.D. Updated: Jul 15th 2015

This section is meant to be an informative guide only. It is not intended for self-diagnosis. These diagnostic summaries are only meant for educational purposes, not diagnostic ones. If you believe that these patterns of symptoms describe you or someone you love, seek out a professional opinion by a treatment provider who understands trauma.

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

  • Directly experiencing or witnessing a) death or threat of death; b) serious injury or threat of serious injury; or c) sexual violation;
  • Intrusion symptoms - one symptom required;
  • Avoidance symptoms - one symptom required;
  • Negative thoughts and feelings - two symptoms required;
  • Arousal and reactivity symptoms - two symptoms required;
  • Duration of symptoms longer than one month;
  • Functional impairment due to disturbances (examples of this can include being unable to work; limited productivity at work; problems in social situations or relationships; problems with health);
  • Not attributed to another medical condition

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