Structural relations between DSM-5 PTSD and major depression symptoms in military soldiers

Jon D. Elhai, Ateka A. Contractor, Marijo Tamburrino, Thomas H. Fine, Gregory Cohen, Edwin Shirley, Philip K. Chan, Israel Liberzon, Joseph R. Calabrese, Sandro Galea

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


Background Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and major depressive disorder (MDD) are frequently comorbid. One explanation for this comorbidity is that PTSD has a constellation of "dysphoria" symptoms resembling depression. Method Using confirmatory factor analysis we tested the role of DSM-5 PTSD's dysphoria factor in relation to MDD symptom dimensions of somatic and non-somatic psychopathology. 672 Ohio National Guard soldiers completed DSM-5 measures of PTSD and MDD symptoms in an epidemiological study. Results Results indicated that in contrast to other PTSD factors, PTSD's dysphoria factor was more related to MDD's somatic and non-somatic factors. Limitations Limitations include generalizability to the epidemiological population of trauma-exposed military veterans rather than civilians, and reliance on self-report measures. Conclusions Implications concerning clinical psychopathology and comorbidity of PTSD are discussed, including whether PTSD should be refined by removing its non-specific symptoms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)373-378
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Affective Disorders
StatePublished - Apr 1 2015


  • Comorbidity
  • DSM-5
  • Factor analysis
  • Major depressive disorder
  • Military veterans
  • Posttraumatic stress disorder

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


Dive into the research topics of 'Structural relations between DSM-5 PTSD and major depression symptoms in military soldiers'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this