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Psychiatr Q. 2013 Mar;84(1):115-24. doi: 10.1007/s11126-012-9232-4.

Mental health approaches to child victims of acts of terrorism.

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New York University School of Medicine, 200 West 70th Street, Suite 16R, New York, NY 10023, USA.


It has long been recognized that human beings exposed to severe stress may develop psychological symptoms. With recent terrorist acts around the world including the New York City World Trade Center September 11, 2001 atrocity, there has been a growing interest in the specific impact of terrorist acts on the victims and witnesses. One area that has received less study is the specific impact on children. This paper reviews some of the general effects of traumatic stress on children and the history of the research in this area including a specific discussion of post-traumatic stress disorder in children. This is followed by a review of how children might react to the trauma of a terrorist attack differentiating between three different subgroups of children (preschool age children, school-age children, and adolescents). Then there is a review of what a comprehensive evaluation of childhood victims of terrorism should entail. Finally, treatment modalities that have been shown to be effective are reviewed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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