Title page for ETD etd-10192009-110325


Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Thompson, Julia E.
Author's Email Address jtho143@tigers.lsu.edu
URN etd-10192009-110325
Title Posttraumatic Stress Disorder in Women after Hurricane Katrina: Predictors and Symptom Endorsement
Degree Master of Arts (M.A.)
Department Psychology
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Kelley, Mary Lou Committee Chair
Beck, Melissa Committee Member
Gouvier, Wm. Drew Committee Member
Keywords
  • PTSD
  • trauma
  • disaster
  • psychopathology
Date of Defense 2009-10-06
Availability unrestricted
Abstract
Hurricane Katrina devastated areas of New Orleans and caused the evacuation of most of the cityís residents. Many people were exposed to dangerous storms and flooding and lost many of their possessions. One of the most common psychological disorders following a disaster is Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. This study describes the PTSD symptom endorsement of a sample of women who experienced Hurricane Katrina. In addition, many of these women had previous trauma histories which are also described. Participants included 287 women from New Orleans, Jefferson and East Baton Rouge Parish recruited for a larger study on motherís and childrenís psychological functioning in the aftermath of Katrina. Participants completed the Posttraumatic Stress Diagnostic Scale and a hurricane exposure questionnaire at 4-7 months (T1) and 14-17 months (T2) post-Katrina. Trauma history, hurricane exposure and demographic variables such as race, income and education were entered into a regression analysis to predict PTSD symptom severity at Time 1. These variables and PTSD symptom severity at T1 were entered into a second regression analysis to predict PTSD symptom severity at T2. At T1, hurricane exposure, trauma history and education predicted T1 PTSD symptom severity. At T2, only T1 PTSD symptom severity was significantly predictive of T2 PTSD symptom severity. Results of the analyses and the description of symptom endorsement are discussed in light of current criticisms about the conceptualization of PTSD.
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