The Importance of Cognitive Processing to Adjustment in the 1st Year Following Amputation

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ObjectiveTo describe depressive symptoms, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and posttraumatic growth at 6 and 12 months following amputation and to explore differences by demographic variables and cognitive processing of trauma.Participants83 adults with newly acquired limb loss.SettingTwo large metropolitan hospitals.Main Outcome MeasuresThe Patient Health Questionnaire depression module, PTSD Checklist, and Posttraumatic Growth Inventory.ResultsSignificant depressive and PTSD symptoms were reported by 15%–25% of participants. Relatively low levels of posttraumatic growth were reported. Negative cognitive processing predicted depressive and PTSD symptoms at 6 months. Positive cognitive processing predicted posttraumatic growth at 12 months.ConclusionCognitive processing appears to be integral to positive and negative psychosocial outcomes following amputation and should be targeted by clinical interventions.

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