Posttraumatic stress disorder among professional and non-professional rescuers involved in an earthquake in Taiwan

Ya Jun Guo, Chin Hung Chen, Mong Liang Lu, Happy Kuy Lok Tan, Huei Wen Lee, Tsu Nai Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

78 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study investigated the prevalence of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among professional and non-professional rescue workers involved in the 1999 Chi-Chi Earthquake in Taiwan. One month following the disaster, 252 rescue workers (167 professional rescue workers, 85 non-professional volunteers) were surveyed with the Chinese version of the Davidson Trauma Scale (DTS-C) and the Chinese version of the SPAN (SPAN-C). Non-professional rescuers had significantly higher scores than professional rescuers on both the DTS-C and the SPAN-C. The prevalences of PTSD, as defined by a DTS-C score ≥44, among professional and non-professional rescuers were 19.8% and 31.8%, respectively. Among the three subscales of the DTS-C, only scores on the numbness/avoidance subscale were significantly higher in the non-professional than in the professional rescue workers. The results of this study suggest that disaster rescue work is associated with a high level of stress even for highly trained professionals and may lead to mental health problems.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)35-41
Number of pages7
JournalPsychiatry Research
Volume127
Issue number1-2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 30 2004

Fingerprint

Earthquakes
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorders
Taiwan
Wounds and Injuries
Disasters
Rescue Work
Hypesthesia
Volunteers
Mental Health
Cross-Sectional Studies

Keywords

  • Earthquake
  • Posttraumatic stress disorder
  • Rescuer
  • Stress
  • Taiwan

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry
  • Psychology(all)

Cite this

Posttraumatic stress disorder among professional and non-professional rescuers involved in an earthquake in Taiwan. / Guo, Ya Jun; Chen, Chin Hung; Lu, Mong Liang; Tan, Happy Kuy Lok; Lee, Huei Wen; Wang, Tsu Nai.

In: Psychiatry Research, Vol. 127, No. 1-2, 30.06.2004, p. 35-41.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Guo, Ya Jun ; Chen, Chin Hung ; Lu, Mong Liang ; Tan, Happy Kuy Lok ; Lee, Huei Wen ; Wang, Tsu Nai. / Posttraumatic stress disorder among professional and non-professional rescuers involved in an earthquake in Taiwan. In: Psychiatry Research. 2004 ; Vol. 127, No. 1-2. pp. 35-41.
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