Frequency and Correlates of Posttraumatic-Stress-Disorder-Like Symptoms After Treatment for Breast Cancer
AbstractDiagnosis of life-threatening illness now meets (4th ed.; ; ) criteria for traumatic stressor exposure for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Quality of life (QOL) and PTSD-like symptoms were assessed in 55 women posttreatment for breast cancer. PTSD symptom measures included the PTSD Checklist—Civilian Version (PCL-C) and the Impact of Events Scale. QOL was assessed using the 20-item Medical Outcomes Study Questionnaire. PTSD symptomatology was negatively related to QOL, income, and age. Time since treatment, type of cytotoxic treatment, and stage of disease were unrelated to PTSD symptoms. With suggested criteria for the PCL-C, 5% to 10% of the sample would likely meet PTSD criteria. Findings suggest that in survivors of breast cancer, these symptoms might be fairly common, may exceed the base rate of these symptoms in the general population, are associated with reports of poorer QOL, and, therefore, warrant further research and clinical attention.