Childhood Trauma May Lead To Brain Damage

February 25, 2010

(ChattahBox) – While the emotional repercussions of childhood trauma and abuse have been documented for some time, a new study has shown proof of brain damage in those children who have had traumatic experiences growing up.

The researchers at School of Medicine and Trinity Institute for Neuroscience, led by Professor Thomas Frodl, took MRI’s of 24 patients between the ages of 18 and 65.

All of these patients had been treated for severe depression, and were given an assessment of their childhood and traumatic experience.

When compared to the control group they showed significant structural differences within the brain, which along with genetic factors made them more susceptible to depression.

“This improved neurobiological understanding shows how stress and genetic variants interact and affect brain structure and function,” Frodl explains.

“In turn it demonstrates how it could affect a person’s propensity for depression. These structural alterations of the brain are associated with a higher vulnerability to depression and a more chronic course of the depression might be associated with further structural changes.

“Therefore, early intervention in the case of major depression is necessary to increase the chance of a good disease outcome. Fortunately, depression can be treated very well by psychotherapy and antidepressant medication. Moreover, prevention strategies for childhood neglect and misuse are highly important to increase public health and to avoid in later life for these individuals, the burden of major depression.”

The study has been published in the journal Neuropsychopharmacology.



3 Responses to “Childhood Trauma May Lead To Brain Damage”

  1. Rosiecee on February 25th, 2010 11:16 pm

    This article says that the 24 people had been TREATED for severe depression. Treated with what? How do we know that it is the childhood abuse that changed the structure of the brain or if it is, instead, the antidepressant medications which they were injesting.

    The Physicians Desk Reference states that SSRI antidepressants and all antidepressants can cause mania, psychosis, abnormal thinking, paranoia, hostility, etc. These side effects can also appear during withdrawal. Also, these adverse reactions are not listed as Rare but are listed as either Frequent or Infrequent.

    Go to where there are over 3,600 cases, with the full media article available, involving bizarre murders, suicides, school shootings/incidents [53 of these] and murder-suicides – all of which involve SSRI antidepressants like Prozac, Zoloft, Paxil, etc, . The media article usually tells which SSRI antidepressant the perpetrator was taking or had been using.

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