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Clin Psychol Rev. 2008 Jul;28(6):1009-20. doi: 10.1016/j.cpr.2008.02.006. Epub 2008 Mar 4.

The independent predictive value of peritraumatic dissociation for PTSD symptomatology after type I trauma: a systematic review of prospective studies.

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  • 1Institute for Psychotrauma, Van Heemstraweg-west 5, 5301 PA Zaltbommel, The Netherlands.


We conducted a systematic review of prospective studies examining the independent predictive value of peritraumatic dissociation (PD) for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptomatology following single traumatic events. Insight into the independent predictive value may help to identify victims at risk for PTSD symptomatology. For this purpose a literature search was carried out using the online databases PsycINFO, Medline/Pubmed, and PILOTS. Studies were included if they were published in peer-reviewed journals (before 2007), focused on more or less single traumatic events (Type I trauma), assessed PD within 1 month, had follow-ups 3 months or later, and which controlled for mental health problems at the time PD was assessed. The majority of the 17 identified studies showed no or only weak indications of an independent predictive value of PD for PTSD symptomatology following type I traumas. Only 3 of the 6 studies with positive results reported a strong independent predictive value of PD. Although bivariately associated with PTSD symptomatology, there is no general consensus across prospective Type I trauma studies that PD qualifies as an important independent predictor of PTSD symptomatology. Results indicate that initial mental health problems, among other factors, are better predictors of PTSD symptomatology than PD.

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