A growing number of young men have reported an array of symptoms that
suggest a diagnosis of posttraumatic stress disorder. Five such men, all
claiming to be Viet Nam veterans, were treated at a VA medical center;
three said they were former prisoners of war. In fact, none had been
prisoners of war, four had never been in Viet Nam, and two had never even
been in the military. Instead, all five suffered factitious disorders. The
authors describe the five patients and discuss differential diagnoses; the
value of verifying military histories is stressed.