Sustained attention in combat-related posttraumatic stress disorder.

J. Golier, R. Yehuda, B. Cornblatt, P. Harvey, D. Gerber, R. Levengood

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


There is substantial evidence that PTSD patients have information processing abnormalities for stimuli that are highly relevant to the traumas they have endured. The goal of the present study was to examine whether this extends to neutral stimuli as well. Twenty-four male Vietnam combat veterans with PTSD were compared to fifteen normal male comparison subjects on their performance on a sensitive measure of sustained attention, the Continuous Performance Test-Identical Pairs version (CPT-IP). PTSD subjects did not differ from controls in their ability to discriminate target stimuli from background noise on the CPT. Additionally they performed as well as controls, even in the presence of external distraction. Thus, this study did not find a generalized deficit in attention associated with PTSD on the CPT-IP. Nevertheless, further clarification of the nature of the information processing disturbance in PTSD is warranted.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)52-61
Number of pages10
JournalIntegrative Psychological and Behavioral Science
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1997
Externally publishedYes


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