Study uses brain imaging to accurately diagnose and classify PTSD

A new study out of Lawson Health Research Institute and Western University is using brain imaging and machine learning to more accurately diagnose and classify PTSD.

Recent advances in technology have shown that there are multiple subtypes of disorders such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

The study has shown that brain imaging can not only help diagnose PTSD but can also help categorize which subtype a patient may be suffering.

Researchers were able to classify PTSD in patients with 92 per cent accuracy.

“Our study suggests brain activity can be used to assist diagnosis of psychiatric disorders and help predict symptoms,” says Andrew Nicholson, PhD, lead author on the study and a post-doctoral fellow at Schulich Medicine & Dentistry who is conducting research at Lawson.

“Patterns of brain activity are objective biomarkers that could be used to diagnose PTSD and, with more research, even predict response to treatment,” says Nicholson.

The study involved 181 research participants, including those diagnosed with the more common form of PTSD, the dissociative subtype of PTSD, and healthy individuals with no history of PTSD.