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1995, vol. 47, iss. 6, pp. 20-39
Stress loads in war
A review of problems of stress loads in war, with a particular view to the experiences from the Yugoslav National Liberation War. The author points out the fact that the problem of stress is nowadays even more pressing because of rapid sophistication of armament and military equipment, particularly of nuclear weaponry and other means for massive destruction and annihilation of personnel and materiel. Since all these threaten the very survival of men they provoke fear, feeling of uncertainty, and appearance of different mental disorders and illnesses, particularly in war conditions. Mental disorders and illnesses provoked by war stress loads accompanied inevitably also our population in our National Liberation War. However, the percentage of these disorders and illnesses was, in our experience, in our armed forces considerably smaller than in the armed forces of other countries participating in the Second World War, mainly because our military personnel was highly motivated to resist aggression and occupation of our country and to fight the aggressors, forces. War neuroses were appearing in our Army, as in other armies, in that war mostly with a small percentage of personnel, and with a specific clinical picture, in the form of psychogenetic seizures. This phenomenon was first noted after the fighting on Kozara mountain in 1943, with soldiers who could not overcome the psychical stress, their high combat morale notwithstanding. In addition to this phenomenon, a practically negligible percentage of soldiers in our National Liberation War reacted to the war stress load by more grave psychotic disorders. Such disorders took place particularly with soldiers with the typhoid fever, and with gravely wounded ones. In the closing stage of the war there were with the newly mobilized soldiers cases of neurotic reaction, in whose clinical picture self-infliction of wounds was predominant. The author also reviews principles and methods of prevention of mental disorders in the National Liberation War, particularly the problem of war neuroses, and presents some methods of their treatment.
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article language: Serbian
document type: unclassified
published in SCIndeks: 02/06/2007