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Pediatrics. 2010 May;125(5):e1124-34. doi: 10.1542/peds.2009-2308.

Prevalence and predictors of posttraumatic stress disorder in adult survivors of childhood cancer.

Author information

  • 1Department of Psychiatry, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, California, USA. mstuber@mednet.ucla.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

This study compared the prevalence of symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), with functional impairment and/or clinical distress, among very long-term survivors of childhood cancer and a group of healthy siblings.

METHODS:

A total of 6542 childhood cancer survivors >18 years of age who received diagnoses between 1970 and 1986 and 368 siblings of cancer survivors completed a comprehensive demographic and health survey.

RESULTS:

A total of 589 survivors (9%) and 8 siblings (2%) reported functional impairment and/or clinical distress in addition to the set of symptoms consistent with a full diagnosis of PTSD. Survivors had more than fourfold greater risk of PTSD, compared with siblings (odds ratio [OR]: 4.14 [95% confidence interval [CI]: 2.08-8.25]). With controlling for demographic and treatment variables, increased risk of PTSD was associated with educational level of high school or less (OR: 1.51 [95% CI: 1.16-1.98]), being unmarried (OR: 1.99 [95% CI: 1.58-2.50]), having annual income below $20,000 (OR: 1.63 [95% CI: 1.21-2.20]), and being unemployed (OR: 2.01 [95% CI: 1.62-2.51]). Intensive treatment also was associated with increased risk of full PTSD (OR: 1.36 [95% CI: 1.06-1.74]).

CONCLUSIONS:

PTSD was reported significantly more often by survivors of childhood cancer than by sibling control subjects. Although most survivors apparently are faring well, a subset reported significant impairment that may warrant targeted intervention.

PMID:
20435702
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3098501
Free PMC Article

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