A correlation study of over 1 million Swedes has just been published. It shows that those diagnosed with a significant stress disorder such as PTSD, acute stress reaction or adjustment disorder were more likely to develop an autoimmune disorder later in life.
The relative risk suggests that highly stressed people are 30-40% more likely to develop an AI disorder than less stressed individuals.
Some interesting details:
- younger age groups showed a slightly higher correlation
- the correlation was the same for sibling and non-sibling comparison groups
- early SSRI treatment for the stress disorder was associated with a reduced likelihood of later AI problems
So there you go. Since it is just a correlation study, it doesn't suggest any mechanism for the association, but of course, there is growing evidence linking inflammatory processes to psychological disorders. One future treatment possibility that occurs to me would be to develop the capacity to travel back in time and avoid the traumatic events that happened earlier in life..... ;P
An abstract is here jamanetwork.com/journals/ja...