Depression And Ptsd In Survivors of Male Violence: Research And Training Initiatives To Facilitate Recovery


  • Mary P., Jennifer A., Nicole P. Koss Bailey Yuan,

  • Veronica M. Herrera,

  • Erika L. Lichter

  • Mary P. Koss and Nicole P. Yuan, Mel and Enid Zuckerman Arizona College of Public Health, Health Promotion Sciences, University of Arizona; Jennifer A. Bailey, Social Development Research Group, School of Social Work, University of Washington; Veronica M. Herrera, Stone Center, Wellesley College; Erika L. Lichter, Department of Maternal and Child Health, Harvard University School of Public Health.

  • Paper prepared for the American Psychological Association Summit on Depression, Queenstown, MD, October 2000. In the present article, sections devoted to the physical health impacts of violence and responses by the medical care system have been omitted due to space restrictions. The conference paper can be obtained from the first author.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to: Mary P. Koss, College of Public Health, University of Arizona, 1632 E. Lester Street, Tucson, AZ 85719. E-mail:


Male violence is an enduring feature of women's lives from childhood through old age. The review covers child sexual abuse, rape, and partner violence with emphasis on the prevalence of violence, its mental health consequences, the course of recovery, and mediators and moderators of traumatic impact. The primary focus is depression and posttraumatic stress disorder, the two major diagnostic entities through which postassault emotions and behaviors have been conceptualized and measured. The effects of psychiatric conceptualizations of victimization and patterns of individual recovery are critically reviewed. The PTSD paradigm as the sole foundation for most victimization research is also debated. Following the review, mental health services for victimized women are examined. The article concludes with public policy recommendations to improve the availability and accessibility of mental health services with emphasis on reaching those survivors who are less likely to consult the formal system.