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Original scientific paper

Self-Inflicted Burns in Patients with Chronic Combat-Related Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Marijana Braš
Zoran Lončar
Maja Boban
Rudolf Gregurek
Lovorka Brajković
Hrvoje Tomičić
Ante Muljačić
Vlatko Mičković
Barbara Kalenić


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Abstract

This study examined self-inflicted burns in case series of four patients with chronic combat-related post-traumatic
stress disorder (PTSD). Those patients were hospitalized in the Burn Unit of the University Hospital of Traumatology in
Zagreb because of severe burns and had a premorbid psychiatric history of PTSD. Demographic data and information
regarding the circumstances surrounding the incident, burn severity, treatment and outcomes of these patients were collected.
The authors have analyzed possible impacts of the sensationalistic way in which media present cases of self-inflicted
burning that induce other, new cases of this suicide type, known in the literature as »Werther’s syndrome«. The
importance of multidisciplinary approach in the treatment of burn patients is stressed with emphasis on the important
role of liaison psychiatrist in treating these patients. It is necessary to educate media people to avoid sensational reporting
on this kind of events. Continuous psychiatric treatment of vulnerable individuals could be useful in prevention of
self-inflicted burns.

Keywords

burn patients; post-traumatic stress disorder; Werther’s syndrome; multidisciplinary approach; liaison psychiatrist

Hrčak ID:

26987

URI

https://hrcak.srce.hr/26987

Publication date:

3.12.2007.

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