Journal of Child and Family Studies

, Volume 24, Issue 12, pp 3767–3773 | Cite as

Identifying Heightened Risk for Posttraumatic Symptoms Among Maltreated Youth

  • Emma H. Ross
  • Christopher A. Kearney
Original Paper


Negative posttraumatic cognitions, dissociation, and depression may be key risk factors for PTSD symptoms in traumatized children. However, less information is available regarding how these factors may impact PTSD symptoms in maltreated youth in particular. The present study examined the relationship between (1) negative posttraumatic cognitions, dissociation, and depression and (2) posttraumatic symptom levels in maltreated youth via structural equation modeling. Further modeling was examined across IQ level, gender, age, ethnicity, and maltreatment type. Participants (n = 360) included maltreated youth from Department of Family Services-related sites. Negative posttraumatic cognitions, dissociation, and depression were associated with heightened posttraumatic symptoms. Model fit remained best with respect to age group (older youth), ethnicity (African American and multiracial status), and maltreatment type (sexual maltreatment and neglect), but varied little across IQ and gender. Specific individual characteristics may thus exacerbate risk for PTSD symptoms in maltreated youth.


Maltreatment Children Adolescents PTSD symptoms 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of Nevada, Las VegasLas VegasUSA

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