Early risk and resiliency factors predict chronic posttraumatic stress disorder in caregivers of patients admitted to a neuroscience ICU Journal Article


Authors: Choi, K. W.; Shaffer, K. M.; Zale, E. L.; Funes, C. J.; Koenen, K. C.; Tehan, T.; Rosand, J.; Vranceanu, A. M.
Article Title: Early risk and resiliency factors predict chronic posttraumatic stress disorder in caregivers of patients admitted to a neuroscience ICU
Abstract: Objectives: Informal caregivers - that is, close family and friends providing unpaid emotional or instrumental care - of patients admitted to ICUs are at risk for posttraumatic stress disorder. As a first step toward developing interventions to prevent posttraumatic stress disorder in ICU caregivers, we examined the predictive validity of psychosocial risk screening during admission for caregiver posttraumatic stress disorder at 3 and 6 months post hospitalization. Design: An observational, prospective study. Participants: Ninety-nine caregivers were recruited as part of a longitudinal research program of patient-caregiver dyads in a neuroscience ICU. Intervention: None. Measurements and Main Results: Caregiver posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms were assessed during admission (baseline), 3 months, and 6 months post hospitalization. We 1) characterized prevalence of clinically significant symptoms at each time point 2); calculated sensitivity and specificity of baseline posttraumatic stress disorder screening in predicting posttraumatic stress disorder at 3 and 6 months; and 3) used recursive partitioning to select potential baseline factors and examine the extent to which they helped predict clinically significant posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms at each time point. Rates of caregiver posttraumatic stress disorder remained relatively stable over time (16-22%). Screening for posttraumatic stress disorder at baseline predicted posttraumatic stress disorder at 3 and 6 months with moderate sensitivity (75-80%) and high specificity (92-95%). Screening for posttraumatic stress disorder at baseline was associated with caregiver anxiety, mindfulness (i.e., ability to be aware of one's thoughts and feelings in the moment), and bond with patient. Furthermore, baseline posttraumatic stress disorder screening was the single most relevant predictor of posttraumatic stress disorder at 3 and 6 months, such that other baseline factors did not significantly improve predictive ability. Conclusions: Screening neuroscience ICU caregivers for clinically significant posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms during admission is the single most important way to identify the majority of those likely to suffer from chronic posttraumatic stress disorder following discharge. Addressing early posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms and their psychosocial correlates during admission may help prevent chronic posttraumatic stress disorder in these at-risk caregivers. Copyright © 2018 by the Society of Critical Care Medicine and Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Keywords: caregivers; prevention; resilience; posttraumatic stress; neurocritical care
Journal Title: Critical Care Medicine
Volume: 46
Issue: 5
ISSN: 0090-3493
Publisher: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins  
Date Published: 2018-05-01
Start Page: 713
End Page: 719
Language: English
DOI: 10.1097/ccm.0000000000002988
PROVIDER: scopus
PMCID: PMC5899036
PUBMED: 29384786
DOI/URL:
Notes: Article -- Export Date: 1 November 2018 -- Source: Scopus
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  1. Kelly M Shaffer
    18 Shaffer