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Keywords:

  • PTSD;
  • Vietnam veterans;
  • Mississippi Scale

Abstract

Few efforts have been made to examine the relationship between standard self-report measures and observer ratings of distress in veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). In the present study correlations between self-report (verbal ratings and scores on the Brief Symptom Inventory) and observer ratings (scores on the Brief Hopkins Psychiatric Rating Scale) of pathology and distress were analyzed for 40 Vietnam combat veterans participating in a weekly outpatient PTSD therapy program. The relationship of these measures to the Mississippi PTSD scale and measures of combat exposure and duration was also examined. Results suggested that the self report and observer measures of distress were significantly correlated for this group. While written self report and observer ratings were correlated with scores on the Mississippi Scale, verbal self reports of distress were not. However, the verbal self reports of distress were most strongly related to reported combat exposure.