Mar 28, 2020

Do levels of posttraumatic growth vary by type of traumatic event experienced? An analysis of the Nurses' Health Study II

Psychological Trauma : Theory, Research, Practice and Policy
Sarah R LoweKarestan C Koenen


Posttraumatic growth (PTG) has been documented in the aftermath of a range of traumatic events, including bereavement, physical assault, and rape. However, only a handful of studies have examined whether levels of total PTG, as well as the 5 domains of PTG (Appreciation of Life, New Possibilities, Relating to Others, Personal Strength, and Spiritual Change), vary by the type of potentially traumatic event. The current study examined variation in total PTG and PTG domains, as well as posttraumatic stress (PTS), by event type using data from a large epidemiological study. Participants were from a substudy of the Nurses' Health Study 2, an epidemiologic study of female nurses in the United States (N = 1,574). Controlling for demographic covariates, we found that rape was consistently associated with lower PTG, both total PTG and all five PTG domains, relative to other event types. Other findings were limited to specific PTG domains; for example, intimate partner violence (IPV) was associated with higher Personal Strength and New Possibilities. In contrast, rape and IPV were associated with higher PTS, and the serious illness or injury of someone close with lower PTS, relative to other event types. These results add to the growing ...Continue Reading

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Mentioned in this Paper

Epidemiologic Studies
Occupational Health Nurse
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

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