Racial and ethnic differences in symptom severity of PTSD, GAD, and depression in trauma-exposed, urban, treatment-seeking adults

Publication Type:

Journal Article


Journal of Traumatic Stress, Volume 25, Issue 1, p.106-110 (2012)






<p>Urban, socially disadvantaged individuals are at high risk for traumatic event exposure and its subsequent psychiatric symptomatology. This study examined the association between race/ethnicity and symptom severity of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), and depression in an urban clinical sample of 170 trauma-exposed adults. In addition, this study investigated the role of socioeconomic position (SEP) and coping style in the relationship between race/ethnicity and posttrauma psychiatric symptom severity. Hierarchical regression analyses indicated that Blacks had lower depression symptom severity compared to Whites. No significant relationship was found between racial/ethnic group status and indices of SEP, PTSD, or GAD symptom severity. Adjustment for trauma exposure, gender, positive reframe coping, avoidance coping and negative coping accounted for 3%, 3%, 8%, 4%, and 3% of the variance in depression severity, respectively; however, Black race remained significantly associated with decreased depression symptom severity accounting for a statistically significant 5% of the variance in lower depression symptom severity. These preliminary findings and their clinical implications are discussed.</p>

Research was supported in part by the National Institute On Minority Health And Health Disparities of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number P20MD003942. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.