PTSD, Traumatic Distress and Complicated Grief: It’s complicated!

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The death of a loved one is amongst life’s most traumatic experiences and complicated grief includes some symptoms of traumatic distress. PTSD is one of the most common comorbid conditions in CG, while CG also presents frequently in bereaved patients presenting with a primary diagnosis of PTSD. This presentation will focus on the similarities and differences between CG and PTSD, the prevalence of comorbidity, as well as the impact of CG and PTSD comorbidity and of traumatic distress symptom severity on treatment outcomes.

Learning objectives:

  1. Analyze the similarities and differences in the phenomenology of PTSD and CG
  2. Describe what is known about the comorbidity of CG and PTSD
  3. Explain the impact on treatment when CG and PTSD are comorbid


Dr. Naomi M. Simon is Professor of Psychiatry at NYU School of Medicine, Vice Chair for Research Faculty Development and Mentorship, and Director of the Anxiety and Complicated Grief Program in the Department of Psychiatry at NYU Langone Health. She is also a Senior Advisor to NYU’s Steven A. Cohen Military Family Clinic. Dr. Simon has over 20 years of experience conducting clinical and translational research in anxiety, depression, complicated grief, and stress-related disorders. She also currently serves as Deputy Editor of Depression and Anxiety. She received an MD from Harvard Medical School, and completed residency in psychiatry at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital/ New York State Psychiatric Institute. In addition, she completed fellowship training in consultation psychiatry at MGH and has a Masters in Epidemiology from the Harvard School of Public Health.

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