Author(s): Morrow LA, Ryan CM, Goldstein G, Hodgson MJ
To assess systematically the pattern of psychologic distress in chemically exposed workers complaining of personality changes, we administered the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory to 22 men with a history of exposure to mixtures of organic solvents. Results indicated clinically significant profile elevations in more than 90% of the exposed workers. Moreover, a consistent response profile was noted, indicating a high rate of somatic disturbances, anxiety, depression, social isolation, and fear of losing control. In addition, those workers with the longest exposure duration had the highest elevations on the scale measuring disturbances of thinking, social alienation, poor concentration, and anxiety. Comparisons between these subjects and a group of former prisoners of war with posttraumatic stress disorder revealed strikingly similar clinical profiles. We present a case history that illustrates the nature of this psychologic disturbance.