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Panorama - The Trauma Industry

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A BBC war reporter investigates how the battlefield trauma of Vietnam - post-traumatic stress disorder - has become entangled in compensation cases in Britain. In The Trauma Industry, he hears from veterans, doctors, psychologists, lawyers and some of the victims of PTSD who have made compensation claims. He brings first hand experience to the programme, revisiting his own emotions following the death of a colleague while on assignment in a war zone.

He meets Falklands war veteran Robert Lawrence, who was shot in the head by an Argentinean sniper and suffers from PTSD. Robert describes to Allan the difficulty of going back to normal family life after such a close brush with death and life at war. "On returning to the UK everybody wants you to be good, calm down," he says of the emotions he still battles. Robert says he still hears from former comrades about their own long-term suffering years after their time in battle is over.

But the days of PTSD being limited to veterans of war zones have passed and the condition, first identified in World War I as shell shock, has made its way into everyday British life.

Broadcast on 27 July 2009.

Number of files: 1
Run time: 29 minutes
Video codec: xvid, 768 kbps, 640x352, 16x9, PAL, 25 fps
Audio codec: mp3, 64 kbps, 44 kHz, mono, cbr
Source: DVD (PAL, 16x9)