Early indicators of problematic grief trajectories following bereavement

ABSTRACT

 

Background: Little is known about the development of Prolonged Grief Disorder (PGD) symptoms over time in adults. For clinical purposes, it would be useful to have knowledge about early indicators of a problematic grief trajectory.

 

Objective: This study aimed to identify classes of bereaved individuals with similar trajectories of PGD symptoms and to design a provisional screening tool including symptoms predicting membership of classes with problematic grief trajectories.

 

Method: In a Dutch sample of 166 bereaved individuals, we conducted a latent class analysis to identify classes of bereaved individuals with similar trajectories of PGD symptoms between two time points (mean of 6 and 18 months post-loss, respectively). Next, we used Receiver Operating Characteristic (ROC) analyses to examine which symptoms at baseline best predicted membership of classes with problematic grief trajectories.

 

Results: We found four different classes: a class including individuals with persistent high PGD symptoms (class 1, 6%), a class of individuals with persistent moderate PGD symptoms (class 2, 35%), a class of individuals with slightly decreasing moderate PGD symptoms (class 3, 33%) and a class of individuals with persistent low PGD symptoms (class 4, 26%). The endorsement of symptoms ‘yearning’, ‘stunned’, ‘life is empty’ and ‘bitterness’ as present ‘often’ during the preceding month at baseline best-predicted membership of class 1 or 2.

 

Conclusions: Two classes of individuals with problematic grief trajectories were identified. Four symptoms were found which could act as early indicators of these two classes in a provisional screening tool.

Reference: 
A. A. A. Manik J. Djelantik, Geert E. Smid, Rolf J. Kleber and Paul A. Boelen | 2017
In: European Journal of Psychotraumatology, ISSN 2000-8066 | 8 | Issue sup6: Traumatic loss | 1423825
https://doi.org/10.1080/20008198.2018.1423825
In de Pdf staat 2018
Keywords: 
Bereavement, Prolonged Grief Disorder
Affiliation author(s):