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Am J Drug Alcohol Abuse. 1996 Feb;22(1):75-93.

Victimization and PTSD in individuals with substance use disorders: gender and racial differences.

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  • 1National Crime Victims Research and Treatment Center, Medical University of South Carolina Charleston 29425-0742, USA.


There is a paucity of studies concerning the prevalence of crime-related posttraumatic stress disorder (CR-PTSD) in individuals with substance use disorders, despite documentation of particularly high prevalence rates of sexual and physical assault in this population. A central objective of the present investigation was to assess victimization experiences and CR-PTSD among individuals receiving inpatient treatment for substance use disorders and evaluate gender and racial differences in assault characteristics CR-PTSD prevalence rates. A total of 95 inpatients (34 men and 61 women; 41 African-Americans, 52 Caucasians, and 2 other minorities) were administered a structured interview to assess substance abuse/dependence, trauma, and PTSD. Approximately 90% of the participants had a lifetime history of sexual and/or physical assault, and approximately 50% had CR-PTSD. With the exception of rape, no gender differences in assault or CR-PTSD prevalence rates were observed. Women were more likely than men to perceive their life as endangered during a rape. Men were younger than women when they experienced their first (or only) aggravated assault and were more likely to have been assaulted by a family member. No racial differences were detected for assault or PTSD, although African-American patients were significantly more likely to identify cocaine as their primary drug than Caucasian patients. Given the strikingly high rate of comorbid CR-PTSD among substance use disordered patients, exploration of the type and timing of interventions would be of clinical interest.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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