Functional neuroimaging studies of post-traumatic stress disorder

Expert Rev Neurother. 2011 Feb;11(2):275-85. doi: 10.1586/ern.10.198.


Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a significant problem that can affect individuals who have been exposed to a traumatic event or events, such as combat, violent crime or childhood abuse. Over the past several years, neuroimaging studies of PTSD have focused on elucidating the brain circuits that mediate this disorder. In this article, we will briefly introduce some of the methods used in functional neuroimaging studies of PTSD. We will then review functional neuroimaging studies that have reported significant findings in the amygdala, medial prefrontal cortex, hippocampus and insula. Finally, we will suggest future directions for research.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Amygdala / anatomy & histology
  • Amygdala / metabolism
  • Amygdala / physiopathology*
  • Female
  • Hippocampus / anatomy & histology
  • Hippocampus / metabolism
  • Hippocampus / physiopathology*
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Positron-Emission Tomography
  • Prefrontal Cortex / anatomy & histology
  • Prefrontal Cortex / metabolism
  • Prefrontal Cortex / physiopathology*
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / diagnosis*
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / physiopathology*
  • Tomography, Emission-Computed, Single-Photon