Buried on page 43 of the Army’s 196-page mental health study released last week is this striking illustration, about which the Army notes:
“Numerous co‐occurring physical and behavioral health issues can share common manifestations and symptoms, which further complicate diagnosis and treatment of any one health issue, let alone the other co‐occurring health issues. The diagram in figure II‐14 depicts a potential overlapping of multiple health issues (i.e., PTSD, TBI, chronic pain, depression, and substance abuse) that can impact Soldiers. Each Soldier can be adversely affected by one or more physical and behavioral health issues at the same time but each in very different ways. Soldiers with the same health issue or issues may experience different symptoms, symptom intensity and duration, or behavioral outcomes associated with these health issues.”
That gives us some idea of the challenges facing the Army’s mental-health professionals.