The Relationship between Lifetime Exposure to Potentially Traumatic Events, Peritraumatic Dissociation, and PTSD in a Sample of Sexually Assaulted Women in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Sexually assaulted women represent a particularly high-risk group for developing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Potentially traumatic events (PTEs) and peritraumatic dissociation (PD) are known risk factors for PTSD. However, little is known about how previous trauma affects PD and how this relationship affects PTSD. We aimed to investigate whether PD acts as a mediator between PTEs and PTSD severity in a sample of recently sexually assaulted women in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Seventy-four sexually assaulted women aged 18–44 completed questionnaires and structured interviews on PTSD, PD, and PTEs. We examined direct and indirect effects of variables using causal mediation analysis. Lifetime exposure to PTEs was a risk factor for PD, but PD was not a risk factor for PTSD symptom severity. Also, PD was not a mediator between PTEs and PTSD severity. We provided recommendations on how to further explore the relationship between lifetime traumatic exposure, PTSD, and peritraumatic dissociation.

Cecilia Zylberstajn, Bruno Messina Coimbra,Thauana T. Oliveira-Watanabe, Mariana Rangel Maciel, Vinicius F. Calsavara, Miranda Olff, Marcelo Feijo Mello & Andrea Feijo Mello | 2023
In: Journal of Trauma & Dissociation ; ISSN: 1529-9732 | 24 | 2 | 252-267
Adults, Dissociative Disorders, Etiology, Exposure, Females, Longitudinal Study, Mental health, Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, Psychotrauma, PTSD (DSM-5), PTSD (en), Sexual Harassment, Traumatic events
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