Is anxiety sensitivity a predictor of PTSD in children and adolescents?
ABSTRACT Anxiety sensitivity (AS) is the fear of the physical symptoms of anxiety and related symptoms. Longitudinal studies support AS as a vulnerability factor for development of anxiety disorders. This study aimed to investigate AS as a vulnerability factor in the development of childhood posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) following traumatic experiences.
The study included 81 children 8-15 years of age who experienced the 1999 earthquake in Bolu, Turkey. The earthquake survivors were compared to a randomized group of age- and sex-matched controls 5 years after the earthquake. Both the subject and control groups were administered the Childhood Anxiety Sensitivity Index (CASI), State and Trait Anxiety Inventory for Children (STAI-C), and Child Depression Inventory (CDI), while the PTSD symptoms of the subjects were assessed using the Child Posttraumatic Stress Reaction Index (CPTS-RI).
Subjects and controls did not differ significantly in CASI, STAI-C, or CDI scores. Multiple regression analysis showed that both trait anxiety and CASI scores predicted CPTS-RI scores of the subjects; the prediction by CASI scores was over and above the effect of trait anxiety.
The results of this study support the hypothesis that AS may be a constitutional factor, which might increase the risk of PTSD following traumatic experiences.
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ABSTRACT: Background Stressful life events in adolescents have been found to be longitudinally associated with higher anxiety sensitivity (AS). A question that has not been addressed is whether AS in adolescence is associated with different childhood adversity exposures. Methods School attending adolescents (n=1149) completed measures of anxiety sensitivity (CASI), trait anxiety (STAI-T), childhood trauma (CTQ), depression (CES-DC), alcohol (AUDIT) and drug use (DUDIT), and resilience (CD-RISC) and coping orientation (A-COPE). Results There was no significant gender difference in childhood trauma exposure, resilience levels or coping orientation. Gender differences were evident in terms of AS, trait anxiety, depression, alcohol and drug use. Depression, trait anxiety and alcohol use mediated the relationship between the amount of childhood trauma and AS and played a role in the relationship between certain childhood trauma types and AS. Neither resilience nor coping orientation had a moderating effect on the relationship between the amount of childhood trauma and AS. Limitations Cross-sectional study, over- or under-reporting of data due to use of self-report instruments, and use of a retrospective measure of childhood trauma (CTQ) that is subject to recall bias. Conclusions Girls are at greater risk than boys for early onset anxiety disorders as girls have higher rates of AS, trait anxiety and depression despite the same rates of childhood trauma, coping orientation and resilience. Our findings, in the context of childhood trauma, underscore the influence of depression, trait anxiety and alcohol use as risk factors for the development of AS in youth.Journal of Affective Disorders 10/2014; 168:5–12. · 3.71 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Pediatric traumatic brain injury is a significant public health concern affecting hundreds of thousands of children each year. The majority of children who sustain traumatic brain injuries are classified as having a mild traumatic brain injury, and a subset of these children go on to experience persistent physical, cognitive, and emotional symptoms. These symptoms, known as postconcussive symptoms, can endure for months and even years after injury. The outcomes of mild traumatic brain injury are variable and not well understood for a small percentage of children who experience persistent symptoms. The current article explores the potential influence of children's posttraumatic stress symptoms on persistent postconcussive symptoms. Despite the high incidence of posttraumatic stress symptoms after pediatric accidental injury, they have not yet been identified as an important factor for consideration in the understanding of pediatric postconcussive outcomes. The article will review the literature on posttraumatic stress and postconcussive symptoms after pediatric injury and consider neurobiological and cognitive factors to propose a model explaining a pathway through which posttraumatic stress reactions may serve as the mechanism for the expression and maintenance of postconcussive symptoms after mild traumatic brain injury. The clinical implications for the proposed relationship between posttraumatic stress symptoms and postconcussive symptoms are considered prior to the conclusion of the article, which acknowledges limitations in the current literature and provides suggestions for future research.Child Neuropsychology 08/2014; · 2.18 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: This study compared the difference in brain structure in 12 mine disaster survivors with chronic post-traumatic stress disorder, 7 cases of improved post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms, and 14 controls who experienced the same mine disaster but did not suffer post-traumatic stress disorder, using the voxel-based morphometry method. The correlation between differences in brain structure and post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms was also investigated. Results showed that the gray matter volume was the highest in the trauma control group, followed by the symptoms-improved group, and the lowest in the chronic post-traumatic stress disorder group. Compared with the symptoms-improved group, the gray matter volume in the lingual gyrus of the right occipital lobe was reduced in the chronic post-traumatic stress disorder group. Compared with the trauma control group, the gray matter volume in the right middle occipital gyrus and left middle frontal gyrus was reduced in the symptoms-improved group. Compared with the trauma control group, the gray matter volume in the left superior parietal lobule and right superior frontal gyrus was reduced in the chronic post-traumatic stress disorder group. The gray matter volume in the left superior parietal lobule was significantly positively correlated with the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory subscale score in the symptoms-improved group and chronic post-traumatic stress disorder group (r = 0.477, P = 0.039). Our findings indicate that (1) chronic post-traumatic stress disorder patients have gray matter structural damage in the prefrontal lobe, occipital lobe, and parietal lobe, (2) after post-traumatic stress, the disorder symptoms are improved and gray matter structural damage is reduced, but cannot recover to the trauma-control level, and (3) the superior parietal lobule is possibly associated with chronic post-traumatic stress disorder. Post-traumatic stress disorder patients exhibit gray matter abnormalities.Neural Regeneration Research 09/2013; 8(26):2405-14. · 0.23 Impact Factor