The relationship between burnout, PTSD symptoms and injuries in firefighters

Source: F. Katsavouni, E. Bebetsos, P. Malliou and A. Beneka, Occupational Medicine, Advance Access, First published online: September 25, 2015
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From the abstract:
Background: Firefighters participate in activities with intense physical and psychological stress.
Aims To examine the correlation between work-related injuries (WRIs), burnout and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms in firefighters.
Methods: The method used for the recording of the elements was the collection of self-report anonymous questionnaires, the completion of which was optional. The questionnaires used were: (i) a WRIs questionnaire, (ii) the Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI) and (iii) the Impact of Event Scale-Revised-Greek version. Descriptive statistics along with univariate and multivariate logistic regression analyses were applied.
Results: The study population consisted of 3289 firefighters. There was a significant association between WRIs, burnout syndrome, PTSD symptoms and age, work experience and physical condition. Relationships were found between PTSD symptoms, the MBI–emotional exhaustion dimension and WRIs and between MBI–depersonalization dimension and PTSD symptoms. The most traumatic event was the ‘dealing with death or rescue of a child’ and the top stress factor was ‘depression about the responsibility for quality of victims’ life’.
Conclusions: The occupational obligations may be responsible for the psychological and musculoskeletal problems experienced by firefighters. Early recognition and response to psychosomatic issues in firefighters is of high importance.