Criminal Victimization, Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, and Comorbid Psychopathology Among a Community Sample of Women

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This paper provides information on the relation between victimization status, crime factors, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and several other psychological disorders among a community sample of women. Results indicated that victims of crime were more likely than nonvictims to suffer from PTSD, major depressive episode, agoraphobia, obsessive-compulsive disorder, social phobia, and simple phobia. Furthermore, life threat was associated with increased risk of major depression, agoraphobia, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and social phobia. Completed rape was strongly related to almost every disorder assessed, while robbery and burglary were not related to any disorder. When demographics, victimization status, and crime factors were entered hierarchically into multivariate logistic regressions with PTSD in the final step, associations between victimization status, other crime characteristics (e.g., life threat, injury), and non-PTSD Axis I disorders were greatly reduced. This suggests that PTSD may be an important mediating factor in the victimization-psychopathology relation for many disorders.

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