Posttraumatic Stress and Functional Impairment in Kenyan Children Following the 1998 American Embassy Bombing

Authors

  • Betty Pfefferbaum MD, JD,

    Corresponding author
    1. University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center
    Search for more papers by this author
    • 5

      Betty Pfefferbaum, MD, JD, and Debby E. Doughty, PhD, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, College of Medicine, University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center;

  • Carol S. North MD, MPE,

    1. Washington University
    Search for more papers by this author
    • 6

      Carol S. North, MD, MPE, Department of Psychiatry, School of Medicine, Washington University;

  • Debby E. Doughty PhD,

    1. University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center
    Search for more papers by this author
    • 5

      Betty Pfefferbaum, MD, JD, and Debby E. Doughty, PhD, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, College of Medicine, University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center;

  • Robin H. Gurwitch PhD,

    1. University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center
    Search for more papers by this author
    • 7

      Robin H. Gurwitch, PhD, Department of Pediatrics, College of Medicine, University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center;

  • Carol S. Fullerton PhD,

    1. Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences School of Medicine
    Search for more papers by this author
    • 8

      Carol S. Fullerton, PhD, Department of Psychiatry, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences School of Medicine;

  • Jane Kyula MA

    1. Neema Counselling & Training Centre
    Search for more papers by this author
    • 9

      Jane Kyula, MA, Neema Counselling & Training Centre, Nairobi, Kenya.


  • This study was funded in part by National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) Grant ROI MH40026 and United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Grant 623-G-00-00-00153-00. The points of view in this article are ours and do not necessarily represent the official position of the NIMH or USAID.

  • We acknowledge and appreciate the support of the Ministry of Home Affairs, the Ministry of Education and the City Education Department, the heads of the city primary and private schools who authorized the time and space for the interviews to be conducted in these schools, and the teachers of the children who participated in the study. We appreciate the assistance of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies and the Kenya Red Cross Society. We also acknowledge and appreciate Farris Tuma, ScD, who provided direction in preparation for the study and in development of this article.

Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, College of Medicine, University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, P.O. Box 26901 WP-3470, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73190-3048. E-mail: betty-pfefferbaum@ouhsc.edu

Abstract

This study examined a convenience sample of 562 Nairobi school children exposed to the 1998 bombing of the American Embassy in Nairobi, Kenya. Posttraumatic stress reactions to the bombing were related to posttraumatic stress reactions to other trauma and to peritraumatic reaction. Self-reported functional impairment was minimal.

Ancillary