Patterns of appraisal and coping across different stressor conditions among former prisoners of war with and without posttraumatic stress disorder.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Little is known about how survivors of extreme events cope with traumatic memories and subsequent negative life experiences. The present study compared (a) repatriated prisoners of war (RPWs) from World War II (WW II) with chronic posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), (b) RPWs without PTSD, and (c) noncombat veterans on measures of general psychological functioning, appraisal, and coping. Appraisal and coping were assessed under 2 stressor conditions: memories of war/captivity and recent negative life events. RPWs with PTSD reported poorer general psychological functioning; significantly less control over memories of WW II: and more frequent use of self-isolation, wishful thinking, self-blame, and social support in an effort to cope with these memories than did the 2 comparison groups. Fewer between-groups differences were found for the recent stressor condition. Findings are discussed in terms of factors that may explain the perseverance of coping difficulties associated with PTSD.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Fairbank, JA; Hansen, DJ; Fitterling, JM

Published Date

  • April 1991

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 59 / 2

Start / End Page

  • 274 - 281

PubMed ID

  • 2030188

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0022-006X

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1037//0022-006x.59.2.274


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States