The Role of Hurricane Exposure and Life Disruption as Predictors of Child Post-Traumatic Stress Symptomatology Following Hurricane Katrina
While many children emotionally recover following a disaster (Salzer & Bickman, 1999), possibly one-third of children will experience significant psychological distress or post-traumatic stress symptoms which cause interference with their daily school and home functioning (Vernberg, La Greca, Silverman, & Prinstein, 1996). Research supports the role that exposure, loss, and disruption play in increasing Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) severity in children following disasters (La Greca, Silverman, Vernberg, Prinstein, 1996; Verberg et al., 1996). However, there are no assessments or questionnaires that have investigated what type of events during and following a hurricane are most predictive of post-traumatic stress reactions. Using logistic regression analyses, the current study examines childrens hurricane experiences and post-hurricane events in order to develop as assessment tool with psychometric properties that predicts post-traumatic stress symptomatology in children. The 20 items retained for the Hurricane Experiences and Life Disruption (HELD) Questionnaire were found to be significantly predictive of PTSD symptomatology.
Advisor:Mary Lou Kelley; George Noell; Frank Gresham; Drew Gouvier; David Constant
School:Louisiana State University in Shreveport
School Location:USA - Louisiana
Source Type:Master's Thesis
Date of Publication:07/09/2009