Operation Warrior Wellness A David Lynch Foundation National Initiative Tweeter Facebook Sign Up for Email Updates

“Sixty-three percent of
those wounded have
either PTS or TBI
(traumatic brain
injury), but many
treatment efforts are
still in their infancy.”
Gen. Peter Chiarelli


Scope of the Epidemic


30–35 percent of the 1.64 million troops deployed since October 2001 meet criteria for PTS or major depression


Only one in every two veterans with PTS has sought help of any kind


$4.0 to $6.2 billion is the two-year cost to society for PTS and major depression

Understanding the Disorder

PTS is a psychiatric disorder that often occurs in military personnel who have experienced or witnessed a trauma. Symptoms of PTS include anxiety, hypervigilance, exaggerated startle response, nightmares or flashbacks, insomnia, outbursts of anger and social withdrawal. Veterans with PTS also exhibit evidence of over-arousal (exaggerated fight-or-flight response).

Urgent Need for New Treatments

Conventional approaches to treating PTS include counseling/cognitive therapy, exposure therapy, virtual reality therapy and medication. Some of these therapies are extensive and involve several months in residence—making it difficult to reach all the PTS sufferers who need treatment. Because many veterans are reluctant to seek help for PTS within the military for fear of being stigmatized, and because Veterans Administration health care resources are overextended, most veterans do not receive adequate care.

Watch the Video

“The initial research offers so much hope: reduced anxiety,
depression, hypervigilance, and insomnia, as well as reductions in
substance abuse, violent behavior, and suicidal tendencies—better
than many things being tried and at far less a cost.”
—Candy Crowley, CNN anchor