The impact of resource loss and traumatic growth on probable PTSD and depression following terrorist attacks

Authors

  • Stevan E. Hobfoll,

    Corresponding author
    1. The Applied Psychology Center, Kent State University, Kent, OH 44242-0001 and Department of Psychiatry, Summa Health System, Akron, OH 44310
    • The Applied Psychology Center, Kent State University, 106 Kent Hall, P.O. Box 5190, Kent, OH 44242-0001
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  • Melissa Tracy,

    1. Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health, The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48104-2548
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  • Sandro Galea

    1. Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health, The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48104-2548
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Abstract

The authors interviewed by phone 2,752 randomly selected individuals in New York City within 6 to 9 months after the attacks of September 11, 2001 on the World Trade Center, and 1,939 of these were reinterviewed at a 12- to 16-month follow-up. It was hypothesized that resource loss would significantly predict probable posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and probable depression since September 11, and that resource loss's impact would be independent of previously identified predictors relating to individuals' demographic characteristics, history of stressful event exposure, prior trauma history, peritraumatic experience, and social support. Second, it was predicted that reported traumatic growth would be related to greater, not lesser, psychological distress. The authors' findings supported their hypotheses for resource loss, but traumatic growth was unrelated to psychological outcomes when other predictors were controlled.

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