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J Clin Psychol. 1987 Nov;43(6):643-9.

Five psychosocial variables related to the existence of post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms.

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University of Michigan, Department of Psychiatry, Ann Arbor 48109.


Sixty Vietnam veterans from a midwestern VA Medical Center were surveyed to determine the relationship between symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and five psychosocial variables: Intensity of combat experienced in Vietnam, current subjective impact of the previously experienced stress of Vietnam experiences, current level of life stress, extent and nature of social support available to the veteran during the first year of return from Vietnam, and pre-service psychosocial functioning. A stepwise discriminant function analysis revealed that combat intensity, current impact of the previously experienced events in Vietnam, and current level of life stress correctly classified 75% of the total cases. These findings were supported by other lines of analyses, including tests of correlation and stepwise regression analysis. Current levels of life stress, especially disruption in interpersonal relationships, also were associated significantly with PTSD symptoms. These findings are consistent with previous reports on the etiology and correlates of PTSD symptoms and suggest the existence of a quantifiable constellation of symptoms associated with psychological sequelae of severely stressful trauma.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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