Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Health Psychol. 2009 May;28(3):379-88. doi: 10.1037/a0014512.

Posttraumatic stress disorder in parents of children with chronic illnesses: a meta-analysis.

Author information

  • 1Institute of Psychiatry, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil.



To estimate PTSD prevalence in parents of children with chronic illnesses or undergoing invasive procedures, and its association with higher risk of PTSD among parents.


Sixteen studies reporting prevalence of PTSD in parents of children with chronic illnesses were identified through a systematic review in Pubmed, Web of Science, Pilots and PsycINFO databases.


Pooled current PTSD prevalence was calculated for parents from these studies. Pooled PTSD prevalence ratios were obtained by comparing parents of children with chronic diseases with parents of healthy children. Meta-regression was used to identify variables that could account for the lack of homogeneity.


Pooled PTSD prevalence was 19.6% in mothers, 11.6% in fathers, and 22.8% in parents in general (p < .001). Pooled prevalence ratio for the four studies reporting on mothers and comparison healthy groups was 4.2 (p < .001).


The high prevalence of PTSD found in this population highlights the importance of promptly assessing and treating post-traumatic symptoms in parents of children with chronic diseases as a key step to prevent the negative consequences of PTSD and preserve their competency as caregivers.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for American Psychological Association
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk