Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

It is estimated that more than 6% of the U.S. population will experience posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in their lifetime (National Center for PTSD, 2010). This debilitating disorder often interferes with an individual’s ability to function in daily life. Common symptoms of anxiousness and depression frequently lead to substance abuse issues and even physical ailments. As you examine the Thompson Family Case Study in this week’s Learning Resources, consider how you might assess and treat clients presenting with PTSD.

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Post an explanation of your observations of the client William in Thompson Family Case Study, including behaviors that align to the PTSD criteria in DSM-5. Then, explain therapeutic approaches you might use with this client, including psychotropic medications if appropriate. Finally, explain expected outcomes for the client based on these therapeutic approaches. Support your approach with evidence-based literature.


Please explain PTSD FIRST. THANKS

Case Study


William Thompson shows a lack of desire to participate in the session even joking about which camera to look at.  He appears to be anxious and have pressured speech. During the video clip he solemnly states “they say I have PTSD but that’s a whole different story”.

The video of William shows a man that appears to not believe the diagnosis of PTSD and explains his currently living situation in terms of “falling on hard times”, (Laureate Education, 2012). Although his profile states that he is recently married, he does not mention his wife; he mentions all other members of the household, (Laureate Education, 2012).



Due to traumatic events, he endured and observed during the Iraqi war, the DSM-5 criterion for PTSD applies to William. According to the American Psychiatric Association, criteria for PTSD in the DSM-5 encompasses physical experience/exposure or threatened to death, violence, or severe injury in at least one measure (American Psychiatric Association, 2013).


Name: William Thompson


Age: 38

Military: Captain, Iraq war veteran

Education: JD degree

Lives: Originally lived in New Jersey but became homeless when he was unable to pay his mortgage. He and his wife now live with Henry (His senior brother) in Pasadena, California

Relationship Status: Just married to Luli Kim

Occupation: Lawyer specializing in finance law—job in jeopardy because of alcohol and PTSD-related concerns

Hobbies: Marathon runner, soccer, listening to jazz music, novice modern art collector

Race/Ethnicity/Religion: African American, Catholic





Laureate Education (Producer). (2012a). Academic year in residence: Thompson family case study [Multimedia file]. Baltimore, MD: Author.

American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders. Washington, DC: Author.


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