Clinical, psychosocial and personality characteristics of traumatized female patients: some implications for person-centered psychiatry

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Ingrid Carlier
Sanne J.R. van Rijn
Marceline M.D. de Ree
Tineke van Veen
Jacqueline G.F.M. Hovens
Mieke A. van der Spek
Ineke Callewaert


Background. There is increasing interest in chronic diseases across the world given their heavy morbidity and mortality. Chronically traumatized women, however, have been less studied than those with acute trauma.Research objectives. The purpose of the study was to describe clinical, psychosocial and personality characteristics of chronically traumatized women within a trauma-specialized day clinic aimed at female patients only, and then to consider their implications for improved clinical care.Method. This involved a cross-sectional study, using the following baseline Routine Outcome Monitoring (ROM) measures: Self-Rating Inventory for PTSD (SRIP), Symptom Checklist 90 (SCL-90), Temperament and Character Inventory (TCI), Utrecht Coping List (UCL). A total of 129 female patients (18-65 years of age) were included. The characteristics of patients studied were described concerning PTSD and non-PTSD groups: 100 female patients had PTSD (77.5%, total SRIP score ≥ 52), 29 female patients had no PTSD or partial PTSD (22.5%, total SRIP score <52). Both groups had been exposed to chronic trauma without differences regarding nature of trauma.Results. Patients with PTSD, compared to non-PTSD, reported more general psychopathology (SCL-90) and more passive coping (UCL), which was reflected in their personality traits (TCI). Linear regression analyses showed that total PTSD was positively associated with sleeping problems (SCL-90), avoidance and passive coping reactions (UCL), and Self-Transcendence (TCI Character scale). Self-Directedness (TCI Character scale) and Reward Dependence (TCI Temperament scale) were negatively associated with total PTSD symptoms.Discussion. The implications for treatment and person-centered care of broad characteristics of chronically traumatized women were outlined and discussed.Conclusions. Pathogenic implications of chronic trauma were elicited for female patients experiencing chronic trauma. Consideration of their contextualized profiles appears helpful for individualized care, one of the key elements of person-centered care.

Article Details

Regular Articles
Author Biography

Ingrid Carlier, Leiden University Medical Centre, Leiden, the Netherlands

Department of Psychiatry, Associate Professor and Research Director


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