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Nurs Res. 1985 Mar-Apr;34(2):71-5.

Identification of postdisaster bereavement risk predictors.


Investigators have focused primarily on the bereavement experiences of widows and parents of deceased infants. In this study, subjects were 69 bereaved close family members and friends of deceased disaster victims and 50 control subjects. Six variables, not examined before, were entered in a series of hierarchical step-wise regression equations to determine their ability to predict health outcomes. The six variables were gender, age, concurrent life stress, perception of the prior relationship between the bereaved and deceased as central or peripheral, perception of catastrophic death as preventable or unpreventable, and perception of social support. The three health outcomes were depression, somatization, and physical health status. Results indicated that the six selected variables accounted for 48% of the variance in predicting depression, 39% in predicting somatization, and 35% in predicting physical health status in the bereaved group. Concurrent negative life stress was the most important single predictor in all three health outcomes in both groups of subjects.

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