Author Affiliations: Department of Psychiatry, College of Physicians and Surgeons (Drs Neria and Sullivan) and Department of Epidemiology, Mailman School of Public Health (Dr Neria), Columbia University, New York City, New York; and Divisions of Clinical Therapeutics (Dr Neria) and Molecular Imaging and Neuropathology (Dr Sullivan), New York State Psychiatric Institute, New York City.
Exposure to mass trauma is common. In the United States, 15% of women and 19% of men have reported lifetime exposure to natural disasters alone.1 Since the advent of 24-hour television news, exposure to mass violence and natural disasters through the media is even more widespread. Although exposure to trauma has a wide range of psychopathological consequences, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has been shown to be the most common.2
Neria Y, Sullivan GM. Understanding the Mental Health Effects of Indirect Exposure to Mass Trauma Through the Media. JAMA. 2011;306(12):1374–1375. doi:10.1001/jama.2011.1358