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Eur J Psychotraumatol. 2015 May 19;6:27584. doi: 10.3402/ejpt.v6.27584. eCollection 2015.

Complex PTSD: research directions for nosology/assessment, treatment, and public health.

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Department of Psychiatry, University of Connecticut School of Medicine, Farmington, CT, USA;


Complex posttraumatic stress disorder (CPTSD) in children and adolescents extends beyond the core PTSD symptoms to dysregulation in three psychobiological domains: (1) emotion processing, (2) self-organization (including bodily integrity), and (3) relational functioning. CPTSD research directions for the next decade and beyond are identified in three areas: (1) diagnostic classification (establishing the empirical integrity of CPTSD as a distinct form of psychopathology) and psychometric assessment [validation and refinement of measures of childhood polyvictimization and developmental trauma disorder (DTD)], (2) rigorous evaluation and refinement of interventions (and algorithms for their delivery) developed or adapted for CPTSD and DTD, and (3) the epidemiology of CPTSD and DTD, and their public health and safety impact, across the lifespan and intergenerationally, for populations, nations, and cultures.


PTSD; adolescence; assessment; children; public health; self-regulation; treatment

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