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Keywords:

  • validity;
  • PTSD;
  • refugees;
  • immigrants

Abstract

The aim of this study was to examine the validity of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among Vietnamese refugees. The study population included 74 Vietnamese refugees who had resettled in the metropolitan Boston area. The previously validated Harvard Trauma Questionnaire was used to assess traumatic events and trauma-related symptoms. The number of traumatic events experienced was positively correlated with the severity of PTSD-related symptoms in this population. Internal consistency estimates and principal components analysis provided results that generally supported DSM-IV symptom dimensions of arousal, avoidance, and reexperiencing. However, the emergence of two separate dimensions of avoidance reflected the important contribution of depression to the traumatic response.