Gender, trauma type, and PTSD prevalence: a re-analysis of 18 nordic convenience samples
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National Centre for Psychotraumatology, University of Southern Denmark, Campusvej 55, Odense M, DK, 5230, Denmark
Annals of General Psychiatry 2012, 11:26 doi:10.1186/1744-859X-11-26Published: 29 October 2012
The aim of the study was to examine a possible trauma type related variance in the gender difference of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) prevalence.
An analysis was conducted on 18 convenience sample studies including data from a total of 5220 participants. The studies all applied the Harvard Trauma Questionnaire – part IV to assess PTSD. Cohen’s d was used to measure variance in gender differences. Trauma types included disasters and accidents, violence, loss, chronic disease and non-malignant diseases.
The results showed an overall gender difference in PTSD prevalence similar to previous findings. Thus, women had a two-fold higher prevalence of PTSD than men. Besides categorical analyses, dimensional analyses of PTSD severity were also performed; the latter were associated with twice as large effect sizes. Females were more vulnerable to PTSD after disasters and accidents, followed by loss and non-malignant diseases. In violence and chronic disease, the gender differences were smallest.
The findings support the existence of a trauma type related variance in gender differences in PTSD prevalence.