Recognizing Trauma and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Symptoms in Individuals With Psychotic Disorders


  • Matthew R. Putts

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Addictions and Rehabilitation Studies, East Carolina University.
    • Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Matthew R. Putts, Department of Addictions and Rehabilitation Studies, College of Allied Health Sciences, East Carolina University, Mailcode #677, Greenville, NC 27858-4353 (e-mail:

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  • The author would like to thank Paul Toriello, Weili Lu, Tami Fragedakis, Marie Agius, Alicia Bell, and Jeffrey Thomas for their invaluable insight, critiques, and assistance.


The majority of individuals diagnosed with a psychotic episode also meet symptom criteria for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD; Mueser, Lu, Rosenberg, & Wolfe, 2010). Unfortunately, trauma from both previous life events and the experiences of a psychotic episode as well as PTSD symptoms are rarely recognized in this population. Steps to assessing trauma history and PTSD symptoms and initiating treatment in a client diagnosed with a psychotic disorder are highlighted.