Maladaptive appraisals as a risk factor for posttraumatic stress: a study of trainee firefighters.
ABSTRACT This study tested the proposal that catastrophic appraisals are a risk factor for developing stress reactions after trauma. Trainee firefighters (N = 82) were assessed during training (and before trauma exposure), and 68 firefighters were subsequently reassessed 6 months after commencing firefighter duty (after trauma exposure). Initial assessment included the Clinician Administered PTSD Scale, the Traumatic Events Questionnaire, and the Posttraumatic Cognitions Inventory. The Clinician Administered PTSD Scale was again administered approximately 20 months after initial assessment and after trauma exposure. Posttraumatic stress at follow-up was predicted by pre*trauma catastrophic thinking (24% of variance). These findings accord with cognitive models predicting that a tendency to catastrophize about negative events is a risk factor for developing posttraumatic stress symptoms.
SourceAvailable from: Nancy Nicolson[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The cognitive model posits that negative appraisals play an important role in posttraumatic stress disorder, in children as well as in adults. This study examined correlates of negative appraisals in relation to trauma exposure and their relationship to posttraumatic stress symptoms (PTSS) in 414 Sri Lankan adolescents, aged 12 to 16, living in areas impacted in varying degrees by the 2004 tsunami. In 2008, participants completed measures of negative appraisals, lifetime traumatic events, posttraumatic stress symptoms, internalizing symptoms, ongoing adversity, and social support. The majority (70 %) of the participants reported multiple traumatic events; 25 % met DSM-IV criteria for full or partial PTSD. Adolescents who had experienced more severe events, abusive events, greater cumulative trauma, or greater current adversity reported more negative appraisals. In regression analyses controlling for known risk factors such as female gender, cumulative trauma, ongoing adversity, and low social support, negative appraisals were the best predictor of PTSS, explaining 22 % of the variance. This relationship appeared specific to PTSS, as negative appraisals did not predict internalizing symptoms. Findings confirm the link between negative cognitions concerning traumatic events and persistent PTSS in adolescents, but longitudinal studies are needed to determine whether appraisals contribute to symptom maintenance over time.Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology 02/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10802-015-9985-y · 3.09 Impact Factor
Zeitschrift für Klinische Psychologie und Psychotherapie 01/2012; 41(3):166-179. DOI:10.1026/1616-3443/a000155 · 0.79 Impact Factor
Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology 02/2011; 30(2):184-215. DOI:10.1521/jscp.2011.30.2.184 · 1.36 Impact Factor