A cross-sectional study among survivors of the 2008 Sichuan earthquake: prevalence and risk factors of posttraumatic stress disorder

Jiuping Xu, Xiaocui Song
General Hospital Psychiatry 2011, 33 (4): 386-92

OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study is to estimate the prevalence of probable posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), explore the related risk factors among Sichuan earthquake survivors in different counties and compare the findings in our study to others.

METHOD: A cross-sectional sample survey was conducted to collect data in heavily (n=367) and moderately damaged counties (n=337). We used the PTSD Check List-Civilian Version (PCL-C), which consists of 17 items corresponding to each symptom of Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition.

RESULTS: The prevalence of probable PTSD in heavily damaged counties (48.2%) was higher than that in moderately damaged counties (14.5%). Many associated risk factors were identified in the cross-sectional study.

CONCLUSION: Female, Han nationality, low monthly income, fear during earthquake and low social support in the past year were significant risk factors in heavily damaged counties, while the probable PTSD in moderately damaged counties was related to female, youth, fear during earthquake and low social support.

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