Category: PTSD

Symposium

Symposium 86 - Beyond Diagnosis: Mediators Underlying the Link Between PTSD and Adverse Outcomes

Saturday, November 18
12:00 PM - 1:30 PM
Location: Sapphire Ballroom A, Level 4, Sapphire Level

Keywords: PTSD (Posttraumatic Stress Disorder) | Risk / Vulnerability Factors | Resilience
Presentation Type: Symposium

Converging research underscores a strong relation between posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and a variety of adverse outcomes. For example, elevated PTSD symptoms are consistently associated with negative interpersonal outcomes (Ozer et al., 2003), trauma survivors are at increased risk of attempting or completing suicide (Sareen et al., 2007), rates of violence among individuals with PTSD are approximately three times higher than those without PTSD for both civilians (Corrigan & Watson, 2005) and veterans (McManus et al., 2013), individuals with PTSD are more likely to engage in risky and self-destructive behaviors (Thomsen et al., 2011), and up to 94% of smokers with PTSD lapse during the first week of attempting to quit smoking (Zvolensky et al., 2008). PTSD, however, is a complex collection of re-experiencing, avoidance, cognition/mood, and arousal/reactivity symptoms, which begs the question: “What is it specifically about PTSD that puts trauma-exposed individuals at increased risk for compromised physical and psychosocial functioning?”


The current symposium will address this research question by presenting findings from innovative studies conducted by field experts utilizing state-of-the-art data analytic approaches. First, Dr. Joshua Clapp will present results from conditional process models highlighting the importance of index trauma type on social functioning and perceived support in a community sample. Second, Dr. Craig Bryan will discuss a study that delineates PTSD from moral injury and demonstrates that their interaction increases risk for suicidal behaviors among National Guard personnel. Third, Shannon Blakey will present findings from a two-wave nationally representative sample suggesting that increased anger following trauma and self-medication with alcohol are more critical predictors of future aggression than a PTSD diagnosis alone. Fourth, Dr. Nicole Weiss will present results providing support for the mediating role of intermediary emotion dysregulation dimensions in the relation between PTSD symptoms and risky sexual behaviors among a community sample of trauma-exposed women. Fifth, Dr. Mark Powers will present findings from a pilot study examining the influence of putative mediators such as anxiety sensitivity and distress tolerance on treatment outcomes among a sample of adults receiving integrated PTSD and smoking cessation therapy. Dr. Peter Tuerk, discussant, will conclude by synthesizing these talks’ findings and highlighting implications for future research and clinical practice.

Learning Objectives:

Shannon M. Blakey

Doctoral Candidate
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Shannon Blakey, M.S., is a Clinical Psychology Doctoral Candidate at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her research centers on the cognitive and behavioral mechanisms involved in the maintenance and treatment of anxiety and related disorders. She also trains and supervises graduate students, post-baccalaureate research assistants, and undergraduate students in the assessment, treatment, and study of psychopathology. Ms. Blakey publishes research on the maintenance and treatment of anxiety disorders in peer-reviewed journals and is a regular presenter at ABCT conventions.

Presentation(s):

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Peter W. Tuerk

Associate Professor
Medical University of South Carolina

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    Joshua D. Clapp

    Assistant Professor
    University of Wyoming

    Presentation(s):

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    Craig Bryan

    Executive Director & Associate Professor
    National Center for Veterans Studies at The University of Utah

    Presentation(s):

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    Shannon M. Blakey

    Doctoral Candidate
    University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

    Shannon Blakey, M.S., is a Clinical Psychology Doctoral Candidate at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her research centers on the cognitive and behavioral mechanisms involved in the maintenance and treatment of anxiety and related disorders. She also trains and supervises graduate students, post-baccalaureate research assistants, and undergraduate students in the assessment, treatment, and study of psychopathology. Ms. Blakey publishes research on the maintenance and treatment of anxiety disorders in peer-reviewed journals and is a regular presenter at ABCT conventions.

    Presentation(s):

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    Nicole H. Weiss

    Assistant Professer
    Yale School of Medicine

    Presentation(s):

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    Mark B. Powers

    Research Associate Professor
    University of Texas at Austin

    Presentation(s):

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