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How PTSD Can Lead to Earlier Heart Disease

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A new study may help explain why patients with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are more likely to develop heart disease at an earlier age than those without the illness.

The research was supposed to be presented at the American Physiological Society annual meeting in San Diego this month, but the event was canceled due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

The abstract is published in The FASEB Journal. In the study, researchers found evidence of small blood vessel dysfunction which appears to be driven by the sympathetic nervous system — the system behind the fight-or-flight response — along with oxidative stress, an imbalance between free radicals and antioxidants in the bloodstream.

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