Table 1

Data Domains to Consider in the Evaluation of False PTSD

DomainAnalysis to Include
WorkPerformance appraisals and disciplinary actions
SchoolGrades, evaluations, test scores, and correspondence
Friends and familyInterviews that can corroborate symptoms, particularly ones the evaluee may be unaware of (e.g., movement while sleeping or dissociation episodes). Caution is warranted in interpretation of these data because close friends or family may have a vested interest in the outcome of the evaluation.
PoliceArrest records, police reports, or witness statements concerning criminality or past trauma
CorrectionalAny custody records of the evaluee's observed behaviors and activities while incarcerated
MilitaryThe DD-214 (certificate of release or discharge from active duty that lists awards that pertain to actions, wounds, and deployments), evaluations, and disciplinary actions. Given that these records can be forged, evaluators may consider ordering them directly from the National Personnel Records Center online via a SF-180 request form.
CourtsDepositions or transcripts of civil, criminal, or administrative hearings
Medical/psychiatricPast psychiatric and medical evaluations, diagnoses, and treatment. Medical records warrant careful review because non-mental health care providers often do not describe mental health concerns unless they are a chief complaint.
  • From References 4, 5, 9, 18, 19.