The effect of prolonged exposure to war stress on the comorbidity of PTSD and depression among hospital personnel

Yuval Palgi, Menachem Ben-Ezra, Shai Langer, Nir Essar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The relationship between exposure to war stress and to traumatic and depressive symptoms among hospital personnel is understudied. Hospital personnel who were exposed to frequent missile attacks and casualties of war, both military and civilians (n = 106), were assessed for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms and depression a month after the war between Lebanon and Israel erupted. Increased risk for PTSD symptoms was found to be highly associated with increased risk for depression. Logistic regression analysis showed that hospital personnel with increased risk for PTSD symptoms had a significantly elevated risk for depression in comparison to hospital personnel without increased risk for PTSD symptoms (odds ratio = 18.86, 95%CI = 4.08-87.07). These findings show that hospital personnel exposed to prolonged war stress exhibited higher levels of depression in comparison to previous single exposure researches. No profession differences were found in the levels of depression, but physicians were found to be less vulnerable than other hospital staff to develop PTSD symptoms. PTSD symptoms were significantly associated with depression. The results warrant further longitudinal study.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)262-264
Number of pages3
JournalPsychiatry Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - 15 Aug 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Center of Epidemiologic Studies-Depression
  • Comorbidity
  • Hospital personnel
  • Impact of Event Scale
  • Trauma
  • War stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry


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