Predictors of acute and posttraumatic stress symptoms in parents following their child's cancer diagnosis

McCarthy, Maria C., Ashley, David M., Lee, Katherine J. and Anderson, Vicki A. 2012, Predictors of acute and posttraumatic stress symptoms in parents following their child's cancer diagnosis, Journal of traumatic stress, vol. 25, no. 5, pp. 558-566, doi: 10.1002/jts.21745.

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Title Predictors of acute and posttraumatic stress symptoms in parents following their child's cancer diagnosis
Author(s) McCarthy, Maria C.
Ashley, David M.
Lee, Katherine J.
Anderson, Vicki A.
Journal name Journal of traumatic stress
Volume number 25
Issue number 5
Start page 558
End page 566
Total pages 9
Publisher Wiley
Place of publication London, Eng.
Publication date 2012-10
ISSN 0894-9867
Keyword(s) Adult
Child, Preschool
Longitudinal Studies
Risk Factors
Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic
Stress Disorders, Traumatic, Acute
Surveys and Questionnaires
Young Adult
Social Sciences
Science & Technology
Life Sciences & Biomedicine
Psychology, Clinical
Summary This longitudinal study aimed to examine acute and posttraumatic stress symptoms and predictors of traumatic stress symptoms in parents of children recently diagnosed with cancer. The sample comprised 220 parents of 143 children who completed questionnaires at diagnosis (T1) focused on acute stress disorder (ASD); of these, 145 parents of 97 children completed questionnaires 6-8 months later (T2) focused on posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Demographic, psychosocial, and treatment and illness variables were predictors. Results were that 63% of mothers and 60% of fathers met criteria for ASD at T1. At T2, 21% of mothers and 16% of fathers met criteria for PTSD, with 40% of parents reporting significant subthreshold symptoms. Predictors of ASD symptoms were female gender, presence of psychosocial risk factors, trait anxiety, family functioning, and central nervous system tumor diagnosis. Risk factors for PTSD symptoms were younger maternal age, severity of ASD symptoms, and trait anxiety at T1, and parent-reported quality of life of the child at T2. The results suggest that screening for ASD may help identify parents at increased risk of persistent traumatic stress symptoms who could benefit from preventative, evidence-based psychosocial interventions.
Language eng
DOI 10.1002/jts.21745
Field of Research 111403 Paediatrics
111202 Cancer Diagnosis
111707 Family Care
111714 Mental Health
1701 Psychology
Socio Economic Objective 920102 Cancer and Related Disorders
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2012, International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies
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Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Health
School of Medicine
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