ISSN: 1230-2813
Advances in Psychiatry and Neurology/Postępy Psychiatrii i Neurologii
Current issue Archive Manuscripts accepted About the journal Abstracting and indexing Subscription Contact Instructions for authors
SCImago Journal & Country Rank
3/2018
vol. 27
 
Share:
Share:
more
 
 
abstract:
Original article

Sexual trauma type and its relation to alexithymia, dissociation and posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms among women survivors

Elżbieta Zdankiewicz-Ścigała, Maria Weronika Szczepaniak

Adv Psychiatry Neurol 2018; 27 (3): 211-217
Online publish date: 2018/09/30
View full text
Get citation
ENW
EndNote
BIB
JabRef, Mendeley
RIS
Papers, Reference Manager, RefWorks, Zotero
AMA
APA
Chicago
Harvard
MLA
Vancouver
 
Purpose
The aim of the study was to examine the strength of association between posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as well as alexithymia and dissociation relative to persons, who have experienced one of the following types of trauma: trauma associated with rape or sexual violence (ST), other kinds of trauma associated with being a victim of a fire or an accident (NST).

Method
The total number of participants amounted to 117 women, among whom 39 fell victims to sexual abuse (ST), 39 experienced non-sexual trauma (NST), and 39 denied ever having come through a traumatic situation (NT). Seventy five women (64.1%) admitted that they suffered from PTSD. Three standardised instrument were used to assess alexithymia (TAS-26), dissociation (CES) and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PDS).

Results
The ST group is characterised by significantly higher levels of alexithymia, but only in the form of identifying and describing one’s own emotions. The surprising finding was that ST and NT groups reported slightly different levels on the general scale of dissociation, which can be explained by the fact that NST group showed significantly more intensive dissociative tendencies in the form of self-absorption, while ST showed it in the form of depersonalisation and amnesia. In the ST group, significantly more serious PTSD-symptoms were confirmed, particularly regarding the avoidance of stimuli related with trauma. These findings suggest that trauma-type (sexual/non-sexual) might be a key factor determining the extent, kind and intensity of trauma-related disorders.

Conclusions
Dissociation and alexithymia are very important to the development and maintenance of the symptoms of PTSD. The high levels of alexithymia were associated with more serious problems of affective arousal and regulation of affect after trauma.

keywords:

PTSD, trauma, dissociation, alexithymia

references:
Liotti G. Trauma, dissociation and disorganized attachment: three strands of a single braid. Psychotherapy: Theory, Research, Practice, Training 2004; 41: 472-486.
Briere J, Scott C. Principles of trauma therapy: A guide to symptoms, evaluation, and treatment. 2nd ed. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage; 2012.
Pathe M, Mullen PE. The impact of stalkers on their victims. British Journal of Psychiatry 1997; 170: 12-17.
Scott MJ, Stradling SG. Posttraumatic stress disorder without the trauma. British Journal of Clinical Psychology 1994; 33: 71-74.
Breslau N, Davis GC. Posttraumatic stress disorder – the etiologic specificity of wartime stressors. American Journal of Psychiatry 1987; 144: 578-583.
American Psychiatric Association. Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders. 5th ed. Washington, DC; 2013.
American Psychiatric Association. Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. 4th ed. Text revision. Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Publishing; 2000.
Bernstein EM, Putnam FW. Development, reliability, and validity of a dissociation scale. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease 1986; 174: 727-735.
Elzinga B, Bermond B, Van Dyck R. The relationship between dissociative proneness and alexithymia. Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics 2002; 71: 104-111.
Bermond B, Moormann PP, Albach F, van Dijke A. Impact of severe childhood sexual abuse on the development of alexithymia in adulthood. Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics 2008; 77: 260-261.
Salter AC. Pokonywanie traumy. Jak zrozumieć i leczyć dorosłe ofiary wykorzystywania seksualnego w dzieciństwie. Poznań: Media Rodzina; 2003.
Marmar CR, Weiss DS, Schlenger WW, Fairbank JA, Jordan BK, Kulka RA, Hough RL. Posttraumatic dissociation and posttraumatic stress in male Vietnam theater veterans. American Journal of Psychiatry 1994; 151: 902-907.
Schauer M, Elbert T. Dissociation Following Traumatic Stress. Journal of Psychology 2010; 218: 109-127.
Nijenhuis ERS, Van Engen A, Kusters I, Van der Hart O. Peritraumatic somatoform and psychological dissociation in relation to recall of childhood sexual abuse. Journal of Trauma and Dissociation 2001; 2: 49-68.
Sifneos PE. The prevalence of alexithymic characteristics in psychosomatic patients. Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics 1973; 22: 250-262.
Krystal H. Integration and self-healing: Affect, trauma and alexithymia. NY: Analytic Press, Hillsdale; 1988.
Maruszewski T, Ścigała E. Emocje – Aleksytymia – Poznanie. (Emotion – Alexithymia – Cognition). Poznań: Wydawnictwo Fundacji Humaniora; 1998.
Weiskrantz L. Blindsight: a case study and its implications. Oxford: Clarendon Press; 1986.
Lane RD, Ahern GL, Schwartz GE, Kaszniak AW. Is alexithymia the emotional equivalent of blindsight? Biological Psychiatry 1997; 42: 834-844.
Zdankiewicz-Ścigała E. Aleksytymia i dysocjacja jako podstawowe czynniki zjawisk potraumatycznch. Warszawa: Scholar; 2017.
Badura AS. Theoretical and empirical exploration of the similarities between emotional numbing in posttraumatic stress disorder and alexithymia. Anxiety Disorders 2003; 17: 349-360.
Cloitre M, Scarvalone P, Difede J. Posttraumatic stress disorder, self- and interpersonal dysfunction among sexually retraumatized women. Journal of Traumatic Stress 1997; 10: 437-452.
Fukunishi I, Sasaki K, Chishima Y, Anze M, Saijo M. Emotional disturbances in trauma patients during the rehabilitation phase: Studies of posttraumatic stress disorder and alexithymia. General Hospital Psychiatry 1996; 18: 121-127.
Hyer L, Woods G, Summers MN, Boudswyns P, Harrison WR. Alexithymia among Vietnam veterans with posttraumatic stress disorder. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry 1990; 51: 243-247.
Monson CM, Price JL, Rodriguez BF, Ripley MP, Warner RA. Emotional deficits in military-related PTSD: An investigation of content and process disturbances. Journal of Traumatic Stress 2004; 17: 275-279.
Söndergaard HP, Theorell T. Alexithymia, emotions and PTSD: Findings from a longitudinal study of refugees. Nordic Journal of Psychiatry 2004; 53: 185-191.
Yehuda R, Steiner A, Kahana B, Binder-Brynes K, Southwick SM, Zemelman S. Alexithymia in Holocaust survivors with and without PTSD. Journal of Traumatic Stress 1997; 10: 93-100.
Zlotnick C, Mattia JI, Zimmerman M. The relationship between posttraumatic stress disorder, childhood trauma and alexithymia in an outpatient sample. Journal of Traumatic Stress 2001; 14: 177-188.
Litz BT, Orsillo SM, Kaloupek D, Weathers F. Emotional processing in posttraumatic stress disorder. Journal of Abnormal Psychology 2000; 109: 26-39.
Frewen PA, Dozois DJA, Lanius RA, Neufeld RWJ. Meta-analysis of alexithymia in posttraumatic stress disorder. Journal of Traumatic Stress 2008; 21: 243-246.
Stone AM. Trauma and affect: Applying the language of affect theory to the phenomenon of traumatic stress. Psychiatric Annals 1993; 23: 567-584.
Taylor GJ, Bagby RM, Parker DA. Disorders of affect regulation: Alexithymia in medical and psychiatric illness. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press; 1997.
Zeitlin SB, McNally RJ, Cassiday KL. Alexithymia in vicitms of sexual assault: An effect of repeated traumatization? American Journal of Psychiatry 1993; 150: 658-660.
Zeitlin SB, Lane RD, O’Leary DS, Schrift MJ. Interhemispheric transfer deficit and alexithymia. American Journal of Psychiatry 1989; 146: 1434-1439.
Taylor GJ, Bagby RM, Parker JDA. The alexithymia construct. A potential paradigm for psychosomatic medicine. Psychosomatics 1991; 32: 153-164.
Goldberg L. The Curious Experiences Survey, a revised version of the Dissociative Experiences Scale: factor structure, reliability and relations to demographic and personality variables. Psychological Assessment 1999; 11: 134-145.
Zdankiewicz-Ścigała E, Ścigała DK, Borowska A. The validation of the Polish version of the Curious Experiences Survey and its factor structure (in press).
Foa EB. Posttraumatic Diagnostic Scale (PDS) manual. Minneapolis, MN: NSC Pearson; 1995.
Dragan M, Lis-Turlejska M, Popiel A, Szumiał Sz, Dragan W. The validation of the Polish version of the Posttraumatic Diagnostic Scale and its factor structure. European Journal of Psychotraumatology 2012; 3: 1, 18479. DOI: 10.3402/ejpt.v3i0.18479.
Herman JL. Trauma and recovery. New York: Basic Books; 1992.
Hyer L, Woods G, Summers MN, Boudswyns P, Harrison WR. Alexithymia among Vietnam veterans with posttraumatic stress disorder. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry 1990; 51: 243-247.
Moormann PP, Albach F, Bermond B. Do Alexithymia, Dissociation, and CSA Explain the Controversial Topic of Memory Recovery? In: Kalfoglu EA (ed.). Sexual Abuse – Breaking the Silence. 2012; p. 57-70; https://cdn.intechopen.com/pdfs-wm/33657.pdf.
McLean LM, Toner B, Jackson J, Desrocher M, Stuckless N. The Relationship Between Childhood Sexual Abuse, Complex Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Alexithymia in Two Outpatient Samples: Examination of Women Treated in Community and Institutional Clinics. Journal of Child Sexual Abuse 2006; 15: 1-17.
Moormann PP, Bermond B, Albach F, van Dorp I. The etiology of alexithymia from the perspective of childhood sexual abuse. In: Vingerhoets A, van Bussel F, Boelhouwer J (eds.). The (non-) expression of emotions in health and disease. Tilburg: Tilburg University Press; 1997, p. 139-153.
Kessler BL, Bieschke KJ. A retrospective analysis of shame, dissociation, and adult victimization in survivors of childhood sexual abuse. Journal of Counseling Psychology 1999; 46: 335-341.
FEATURED PRODUCTS
Quick links
© 2018 Termedia Sp. z o.o. All rights reserved.
Developed by Bentus.
PayU - płatności internetowe