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Psychiatry Res. 2011 May 30;187(3):392-6. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2009.07.001. Epub 2011 Apr 2.

Posttraumatic stress disorder 1 month after 2008 earthquake in China: Wenchuan earthquake survey.

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Department of Epidemiology, School of Military Preventive Medicine, Fourth Military Medical University, 17 Changlexi Street, Xi, an, Shaanxi 710032, PR China.


The objective of the study was to understand the rate of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and to explore the effects of sociodemographic characteristics and the disaster losses on the development of PTSD 1 month after the 2008 earthquake in China. A random sample of 430 survivors were investigated for PTSD with a self-report questionnaire including the Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Self-rating Scale and Survivor Information Questionnaire between June 15 and June 20, 2008. Chi-square analysis and multivariate logistic regression analysis, were used to evaluate PTSD morbidity and risk factors of survivors. A total of 257 (62.8%) subjects met the criteria for PTSD 1 month after the earthquake. Married status (odds ratio (OR) =2.22, 95%confidence interval (CI): 1.06-4.65), female gender (OR=2.36, 95%CI: 1.51-3.70), having deaths or injury of family members (OR=1.67, 95%CI: 1.07-2.57), low education level (OR=1.39, 95%CI: 1.07-1.80), and losses of possessions (OR=1.82, 95%CI: 1.05-3.16) all had a significant effect on survivors' PTSD. PTSD was as prevalent in disaster victims in China as in those elsewhere. In the early stage of disasters, those victims who were female, not well educated, and suffered considerable losses in their possessions or family members should be closely attended to during the early psychological intervention.

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